Lincoln 2 Rovers 1 Fab Fairhurst Brace Fires Imps 4th.
Waide Fairhurst showed his Doncaster Rovers Championship quality at the double as the disciplined Imps stifled Forest Green Rovers as David slays Goliath at Sincil Bank.
For the benefit of Rovers fans, visiting the site for the first time, first the score & scorers, secondly the teams & schemes, then the match report and finally more stats than you can shake an Imp or Green fan at thanks for reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs.
19′ Barry 26′ & 85 ‘Fairhurst
Attendance 2290 (2244 Imps 46 Rovers)
Ref Mr Banks
The teams & schemes
Gray Brown Boyce (Y-50) Newton
Power (Y-41) Fairhurst Rowe (Y-90)
90′ Foster on for Fairhurst
31 GK Preece, 2 Miller 29 Foster 12 Sheridan, 17 Dixon,
Dave Hockaday 4-3-3 (Off)
2 Hodgkiss 27 Pilkington 6 Bennett 3 Stokes
24 Kelly 23 Barry
7 Norwood 8 Klukowski
70 Vieira on for Barnes-Homer, 83′ Williams on for Barry, 88′ Koroma on for Norwood
GK 13 Bulman, 12 Asafu-Adjaye, 10 Vieira, 20 Korona, 25 Williams
To the game fellow football fans to the game………………….
Rovers kicked off towards the Stacey West with the wind taking the early tennis football back and forth. Hodgkiss gets down the line but imperious Fofana blocks for a corner. The short corner gives Kelly the chance to centre but his ball is poor and cleared. A neat move sees Nolan play to Power and then onto the infectious Newton but Hodgkiss nips in at the expense of a throw. Gray’s long throw javelin sees Tomlinson lose out as Rovers get forward swiftly and smoothly but Brown is alert to Hodgkiss’ cross.
Tomlinson robs his man superbly and plays in Power but Bennett nicks it for a corner. The noise from Lincoln’s vociferous 617 squadron is constant, the drum as unrepentant as its bouncing bombs of yore. A lovely ball from Rowe, playing disciplined and deep, puts Tomlinson away from Bennett again but Russell strides from his area to put his laces through it. Power surges onto a Nolan ball and rifles a foot wide.
Another long Gray throw sees Russell fist the ball away and Rovers are up in numbers again. Brown robs Kelly, then plays to Barnes-Homer but he is unable to get a shot away and the chance has gone. Rovers are hogging the possession but the Imps are hunting in packs and closing The Green down all over the field. Rowe is penalised for a rather strong challenge on Banguru and Fairhurst turns on a sixpence and sends a haymaker high and wide. The eager beaver has a point to prove one suspects.
Barnes-Homer is looking strong as Power bounces off him in a fair and fulsome 50/50. Rovers pressure tells as a Barry cross cum shot is left by Fofana and although the ball appears to clip the head of Brown it sails into the corner to give Rovers a 20th minute lead. Perhaps deserved on the balance of play but certainly not the chances and endeavour. Team Lincoln do not buckle and up the pace to even the score within minutes. A great ball from Newton finds Fairhurst who beats Stokes to slam home with his left foot. The goal machine is up and running 25 minutes into his Sincil Bank bow.
A great ball from Rowe is taken by the wind and thus just beyond the gambling run of Fairhurst, after unselfish Tomlinson peels away superbly to split the centre-backs and give him the space. A great curling effort from Kelly catches the wind to whistle just above the top corner, with Farman a watching bystander. A high challenge from Pilkington catches Fairhurst’s brow but he is up and about and sportingly makes nothing of it. Newton bombs down the line again and centres a beauty but Pilkington gets there first for another corner.
Brown and Barnes-Homer are having some terrific tussles with Nat his equal thus far. Another ball from Newton finds Fairhurst who shoots then picks up the rebound but despite intricate passing between Rowe, Power and Nolan FGR clear for a throw. Hard working Thomlinson plays in Rowe who advances and thunders just wide. Power’s high challenge on Stokes, on the overlap, earns him a yellow card. Brown heads the free-kick clear and as Bennett under hits a back-pass to his keeper he is pushed by a rather single-minded, but over physical , Thomlinson to end the danger.
Both sides have played some good possession football at times (60/40 to the visitors) but even though Rovers have started and finished the stronger the Imps have held on well to limit them to just a couple of shots and a goal. Power has been involved in some nice passing play and was unlucky to get a booking for studs up having clearly won the ball.
Both sides keep the faith and, the Imps, with the strong wind at their backs, hoist forward but give the ball away. Hodgkiss overlaps superbly and delivers a beauty that is flicked just over from Barnes-Homer. Fairhurst Power and Gray combine well but again Pilkington clears away the danger. Boyce elbows Kelly but fortunately gets a yellow despite the protest from a posse of Rovers players. Tomlinson is fouled again by Bennett yet the referee has given him nothing. It’s niggly with Power getting pushed to the ground as well.
A wonderful long ball from Rowe sends Thomlinson but Pilkington makes a fantastic saving challenge. Another great ball, this time from Barry, feeds Klukowshi who flashes an effort just wide. Stokes goes down with a head injury but is fortunately OK after 3 minutes of treatment. Nolan tries one on the turn but the ball hits his hand for a free-kick. Brown is on hand to stop another promising Rovers counter as he continues to roll back the years.
Fofana wins a terrific challenge against Bangura and plays to Fairhurst who unloads a 25 yarder just wide. Boyce clears to Power who scampers and plays to Newton steaming forward to his left. His ball to Fairhurst is a good one but again Green deal with it. Forest Green are very much in the game and a great cross from Stokes is just a foot too far for Barnes-Homer to convert. Its end to end stuff now looking very much as if the next goal will win it. Rovers are fortunately just lacking the final ball to some quality approach play with the Imps looking the more likely to get it. Lincoln are passing to it has to be said although the ground has to be the option given the wind is so susceptible to change.
Rowe has had to play a disciplined role from deep with Simmo clearly wanting the Imps to be cautious against a side that can really hurt a team if they are given the space and time to. The pressing has been superb starting with Thomlinson leading the line by example as he tirelessly and unselfishly shuts things down in his in-your-face way the whole game through. Farman’s double punch clears the danger at a corner before Vieira comes on for Barnes-Homer.
Klukowski turns brilliantly but Newton recovers and gets back to deflect for a corner. Kelly’s corner is headed by Brown who then heads a second delivery to allow Lincoln to counter. Rowe races forward and holds on too long when a ball to Fairhurst, making a super run, would have put him clean through. A poor back pass sees Thomlinson one on one with Russell, until he pulls up, to some initial concern. Its not a strain however and he is able to continue giving Bennett another ‘nudge’ moments later.
A great cross from Newton is again cleared by Pilkington, having a very decent game it has to be said. Power has also done some miles for the cause today, playing an understated captain’s game. Stokes ball is headed clear by Fofana who has also had a competitive and disciplined joust in the middle with whoever comes his way. A decent passage of play between Fofana, Power and Rowe is just too long for even the pace of Thomlinson thanks to the swirling wind.
With 5 minutes on the clock Newton wins the ball, in typical team Lincoln fashion, from Norwood and tenaciously moves forward, he twists and turns before playing to Fairhurst who crashes an awesome strike into the top corner to complete his brace with grace. 2-1 Imps and Newton will be knocking on the manager’s door for a brace of assist bonuses. His case is strong as is the case for the defence and Fairhurst’s testimony will certainly support him strongly. Two further penalty shouts on Thomlinson are waved away and Rowe fires just wide before being booked for a foul on Hodgkiss. The Imps continue to pound away for the final four minutes of injury time and find themselves a lofty fourth.
shots on includes goals and saves includes crosses claimed
46 % Ball 54 %
6 Shots on 1
4 Misses 4
0 Saves 2
5 Corners 4
5 Offside 3
11 Fouls 7
3 Yellows 0
0 Reds 0
The Table 17/8/13
|8||FC Halifax Town||3||2||0||1||6||7||-1||6|
|11||Forest Green Rovers||3||1||1||1||10||3||+7||4|
|24||Aldershot Town (-10)||3||1||1||1||4||2||+2||-6|
Posted on August 17, 2013, in A View From The Stacey West by Neil Gentleman-Hobbs & Match Reports, Writers - Neil Gentleman-Hobbs and tagged Lincoln City 2 Forest Green Rovers 1. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.