For the visit of Macclesfield Town, beaten just once, Simmo rested 4, including the under-performing captain, as well as going back to the tried and trusted 10-man approach.
Thanks for reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs
First the teams & schemes, then the match report and finally more stats than you can shake an Imp or Silkman at.
Potential Teams & Schemes
Saturday 27th Sept
Scorers Miller 9′ Tomlinson 19′
Attendance 2265 (2184 Imps 81 Silkmen)
Ref Mr Rees
The Teams & Schemes
Simmo goes 4-1-3-2
5 Miller 23 Brown 25 Anderson 3 Newton (Y)
15 Sam-Yorke 5 Bencherif 10 Ledsham
9 Burrow (R) 11 Tomlinson
14 Gnahoua 10 Fairhurst
11 Moke (Y) 6 Turnbull 18 Gonzalez
3 Barrow 12 Cowan 5 Pilkington 2 Hall
Askey goes 4-1-3-2
Subs & substitutions
The Imps Bench: 31 Preece, 22 Marshall 14 Nolan, 8 Power, 6 Diagne
Substitutions: 77′ Marshall on for Sam-Yorke 82′ Tony Diagne replaces Karl Ledsham.
The Macc Bench: 20 Branigan, 28 Grant, 27 Thomas, 9 Holroyd, 7 Moore
Substitutions: H/T Holroyd on for Gonzalez 64 Alex Grant on for Dan Cowan, 79 Moore on for Fairhurst.
To the game fellow football fans to the game…………
The ball works its way back to Townsend from the centre. Bencherif tries some magic but the ball runs through to give Taylor an early touch. Turnbull is undone by Sam-Yorke but manages to toe poke back to his keeper. The Imps endeavour however Macc look dangerous on the counter. It’s an untidy opening, littered with fouls as the ball spends more time off the pitch than on it. Newton gets into the game. beats two but Pilkington clears. Newton is involved again, this time with his newfound long throw. Taylor fails to deal with it, leading to a scramble in the box, then some head tennis, before the ball falls to the feet of Miller. He whistles one into the bottom right corner for a vital lead for the Imps.
Anderson breaks down a Silkmen counter and Newton is off again sending a ferocious forty yarder well wide. A Tunbull free kick is met by Pilkington but his flicked header goes over the bar. Neither side has really settled as the start-stop game continues. Macc shoot, or rather head themselves in the foot. Cowan overconfidently heads back to Taylor, Tomlinson gambles, skips round him and slots home for the second.
Tomo is away again but loses it and a Turnbull and Moke exchange sees the Silkmen threaten until Bencherif snuffs out the danger from Fairhurst. Miller sends a glorious cross to the far post but Burrow and Sam-Yorke are unable to get a head to it. Ledsham lets fly from 35- yards but that one will only trouble the statisticians. The Imps are beginning to play some passing football through Bencherif although Moke is beginning to smoke with a one-two with Barrow that ends with a brilliant challenge from Brown. Moke cuts inside and unloads a beauty that Townsend turns around the post. A goal-kick is given, par for the officials course in the fifth tier.
Macclesfield clearly struggling to deal with the Imps full-backs and the height advantage, have found their normal passing game and the Barrow long throw to be totally negated by an impressive in your face display. Sam-Yorke and Ledsham are clearly better suited to the system with the former hitting a glorious effort wide. Burrow then goes through Moke with both feet off the ground with Moke quickly recovering to push him over. But a red card it is once the hand-bags finish, with a yellow for Moke. A Three game ban for Burrow you feel, with Lincoln going 4-4-1 with Sam-Yorke up top on his own.
Moke twists and turns but his effort is deflected off Anderson for a corner. From the half-cleared corner Fairhurst tees up Pilkington who rifles wide. Sam-Yorke goes down too easy but he is worrying them as the Imps go for a counter-attacking approach given the numerical disadvantage. There are a couple of chances too as Bencherif hits a howitzer, Ledsham plays the rebound to Tomlinson who is offside but finishes sweetly anyway. Miller delivers Bencherif steams in and deftly dinks to Tomlinson but his whipped cross come shot beats everyone. Turnbull also shows his quality to beat his man before firing a twenty-yard drive over the crossbar.
Holroyd comes on up front for Gonzalez as Macc go for the jugular. Moke’s touch lets him down. A long throw from Newton finds the head of Bencherif only for Taylor to brilliantly save. The Silkmen are enjoying the lions share of possession with Mendy, Ledsham and Bencherif doing a sterling job to shield the back four. Miller professionally blocks Fairhurst in the box but gets away with a ploy that would often be given. The Imps are competing for everything, Ledsham in particular is showing a great engine given this is his full debut with on pitch minutes limited. Can he last given the 10 Imps are up against it against play-off chasing Macc?
Sam-Yorke is also holding up well, given poor service and being expected to scrap against four. Macc do seem to be lacking urgency when they do get some space, Moke aside where is the pace? Newton slows him down and gets a yellow for his trouble. Tomlinson gets a chance to stretch his legs but his ball is beyond Sam-Yorke to end a promising counter. Barrow gets beyond Miller and crosses but Anderson clears. Holroyd tries a thirty-five yard volley that is easily saved as the frustration grows amongst the Silkmen. They do look narrow and leg weary when the flanks have yielded the few opportunities they have created. Mendy robs Turnbull and almost gets Sam-Yorke away but he is crowded out.
Askey decides to change things with Grant on for Cowan, allowing Hall to get forward more to stretch and test the Imps with his quality deliveries. Newton flies down the flank and delivers for Tomlinson to head wide, although he did look as if he was nudged. Moke conjures and tees up Gnahoua for a left footed strike from 20-yards that is well saved by Townsend. Sam-Yorke, takes a Miller ball in his stride and has a dig that goes wide. He and Ledsham look dead on their feet but it is Sam-Yorke who gets a well earned rest. So terror Tomlinson down the middle with Marshall coming on and going wide.
Fairhurst has failed to prove a point and makes way for Moore. A great run down the middle from Gnahoua sees him shoot too early and blast wide. Ledsham comes off to a deserved standing ovation for Diagne in a defensive midfield berth. A long one from Brown finds Marshall but he cannot get a clean shot away and Taylor easily gathers. City close the game out, job done, to silence the critics that seem quick to jump on an anti-Imps bandwagon.
The Imps should be proud of this win, they bounced back from an appalling run, went down to ten and beat a ply-off chasing side 2-0. Macc had only been beaten once this season yet were restricted to just two shots. The Imps contested every ball and disrupted them to the extent that they struggled to get any kind of game-plan or momentum going. Miller got man of the match but change in midfield shielded a back four that loves to get forward but is so often stretched on the counter.
Gateshead is another tough one Tuesday but at least this ridiculous talk of questioning the manager on the eve of a pivotal game and, thus throwing the bathwater out with the baby, will be put to bed for a while.
Stats & Table
Note: shots on includes goals and all blocks and saves includes crosses claimed
55 % Ball 45 %
4 Shots on 2
3 Misses 6
2 Saves 2
3 Corners 4
2 Offside 0
12 Fouls 8
1 Yellows 1
1 Reds 0
|2||FC Halifax Town||12||7||3||2||22||9||+13||24|
|12||Forest Green Rovers||12||5||4||3||15||11||+4||19|
|24||AFC Telford United||12||1||3||8||17||33||-16||6|