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Match Reports

📝 Match Report: City 2 Lincoln City 1

Grecians edge victorious in the battle of the Romans

11 March 2023

Match Reports

📝 Match Report: City 2 Lincoln City 1

Grecians edge victorious in the battle of the Romans

11 March 2023

City picked up their second home win on the trot as they came from behind to beat Lincoln at a soggy SJP.

Sam Nombe scored both as the Gary Caldwell's men reacted well to Paudio O'Connor's scruffy opener to secure a seventh point from three matches. 

The manager made two changes with Harry Kite and Kevin McDonald both ruled out with injuries, so in came Jay Stansfield and Joe White to replace them. 

The Grecians began the affair attacking the St James Road Stand, in their formidable Red and White striped shirts, whilst the Imps had the task of attempting to take down City Infront of their extra line of defence, a sold out, rocking Big Bank. 

The two teams took the knee, before Archie Collins got the game underway. Some silky footwork from Exeter's centre half Alex Hartridge gave Stanno and Mitchell a platform to launch their first attack, leading to a freekick, swept in by Newcastle loanee White, however no one managed to get on the end of the teasing ball in. 

The rain continued to pour down onto the SJP carpet, both teams enjoying short spells of possession, with glimpses of opportunity in behind the backline, however both keepers were the only ones getting on the end of the hopeful balls. It's fair to say, despite the pitch looking immaculate as always, the amount of slipping and sliding summed up the woeful, wet condition's.

Lincoln's Jack Diamond fired the first effort at goal, requiring a firm, yet simple save Gary Woods. With the Imps gem looking dangerous, a slip from Hartridge, led to an opportunity for Diamond to go again, striding into the penalty area, winning a soon to prove clinical first corner of the game.

The initial ball in found the head of Manchester United graduate, and Lincoln skipper Regan Poole's head, eventually finding O'Connor's who bundled it home - turning scraps into fortune. 

A frustrating opening 25 minutes to the encounter carried on deeper into the first half, despite the Grecians beginning to get a foot hold on the game, neither Nombe or Stanno could locate each other, until the thirty-third minute, on the back of a  corner, a lose back pass from Lincoln's Roughan, opened up an empty net for super Nombe, who with maximum composer slotted the ball into the back of the Imps net. 

The Grecians number 10's goal allowed City to carry out several quick ventures into the oppositions ground, which got the Big Bank bouncing. Lincoln's defensive line stood firm, granting their forward players freedom to get back to launching some promising waves of attacks, searching for another golden opportunity. 

The half time break was a chance for the sides to regroup, and discuss the game plan for the upcoming, pivotal second forty-five minutes. 

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Only one change at half time, a surprising one for the fans in attendance, seeing Jamal Blackman marking his entrance to the Roman encounter, in replacement for initial keeper Woods who felt a hamstring tweak.

A familiar first ten minutes of the half saw regular turns in possession, with neither team able to challenge both keepers. As the heavy rain turned to drizzle, and the fog began to enter the sky's of Exeter, Lincoln saw a glimpse of Mitchell's attacking flair down the left flank, however only providing Stanno with small pieces to pick up and work with.

Not much to talk about as the sides entered the final third of the battle, despite both sides switching their game plans, and bringing fresh cavalry into the contest. For Lincoln, Lasse Sørensen and Teddy Bishop replacing Matty Virtue-Thick and teammate Seán Roughan, whilst manager Caldwell made a double attacking change, bringing on young, exciting midfielder Kegs Chauke and Scottish forward James Scott. 

Just like the City's opener, as frustration seemed to get a hold of the Grecian players, some brilliant hold up from replacement Scott, followed by some slick interplay between threatening Mitchell and Sam Nombe, the City forward made it a brace by cutting in from the left hand side rolling the ball firmly across the turf, neatly into the bottom right-hand corner of the net, right Infront of the erupting Exeter fans.

Lincoln looked to the bench for a spark to find a late equaliser, bringing on both Luke Plange and Shodipo, for one last push at taking a share of the points home with them. Just as the game seemed to have been put to bed by the Grecians, a silly pull back from Hartridge saw bad turn to worse for the City centre back, as the ref reached to his pocket and just how he conceded the foul, pulled out the red calling for an early shower for the City man.

With the red and white army down to ten men, a suspensful final five additional minutes saw two Josh Key penalty claims, but it would matter not as City held on. 

Next Saturday sees the Grecians travel the shortest distance of the season up to Cheltenham for another crucial midday encounter.

City: 33 Gary Woods (GK) 5 Alex Hartridge 6 Rakeem Harper 7 Demetri Mitchell 8 Archie Collins 9 Jay Stansfield 10 Sam Nombe 11 Joe White 12 Josh Key 14 Will Aimson © 26 Pierce Sweeney

Subs used:

18 Jamal Blackman (GK) 2 Jake Caprice  15 Kegs Chauke 23 James Scott 27 Jonathon Grounds

Lincoln: 1 Carl Rushworth (GK) 2 Regan Poole © 4 Lewis Montsma 5 Adam Jackson 12 Ethan Erhahon 15 Paudie O'Connor 18 Ben House 19 Daniel Mandroiu 24 Sean Roughan 26 Matthew Virtue 27 Jack Diamond

Subs used:

9 Luke Plange 10 Teddy Bishop 11 Olamide Shodipo 21 Lasse Sorenson

Referee - Sunny Singh Gill 

Attendance - 6,193 (284)


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