Lincoln United 2 Frickley 1
(In fact, they shot several times and a couple went in too)
Frickley went into this game unbeaten in 9 in the league whilst Lincoln had only won once in 9, hadn’t scored at home since September and shipped 9 against Leek a few weeks ago, so it seemed like this would be the perfect time to visit Lincoln’s second team (after Lincoln Moorlands Railway, of course). Unfortunately, Lincoln hadn’t read the script and pinched a late winner in a physical encounter at Ashby Avenue.
In the starting line up, Danny Frost came in to replace Big Gav, who was ill. Otherwise, it was the same team that went out against MDT. Young stopper James Brookes was named on the bench instead of Dangerous Dan Palmer.
Lincoln signalled their intent right from the off, with their number 10, Paul Grimes, getting into the Frickley box and hitting a shot just wide, straight from kick off before a Green shirt had even touched the ball.
The boys in green played themselves into the game, with a handful of chances coming in quick succession. A curling shot by Duggie went agonisingly wide, a Stone Cold Steve Hopewell shot into the side netting followed by a Stone Cold header that ended up in the net but was ruled offside. The best early chance came in the 14th minute when Darkenbauer hit a long ball forward, Frosty chased it down, beat the keeper to it and rounded him before trying to pass the ball into the empty net from an acute angle, requiring the defender to make a desperate clearance off the line.
On 19 minutes came the defining moment of the half, Lincoln’s Andy Toyne picked up the ball on the right corner of the Green’s box, tried to make the byline to get a cross in but as Mitch slid in to make the tackle he tantalisingly hung a leg in front of the Lincoln forward who gleefully accepted the invitation, went over Mitch’s outstretched leg, penalty awarded. Toyne took the kick himself, beating Sebba just inside the post after the Pole in Goal had gone the right way, 1-0 to Lincoln.
Further chances fell to each side after this as on 22 minutes Lincoln had a header saved by Sebba at the back post. On 31 came Frickley’s best chance of the half as Haze knocked a pass over the top to Frosty who got in behind the defenders to go one on one with the keeper but a defender chased back, putting the Iceman off, stabbing the ball just wide.
Sebba showed his class after 37 minutes when a slip by Cam Hough left the Lincoln frontman with just the keeper to beat but Sebba stood up to him and with almost too much time to think, the striker hit it straight at Sebba’s legs, danger averted.
Just a minute later, Stone Cold Steve picked up the ball on the touchline but his progress was halted as Lincoln’s Charlie Ward ploughed through him, putting Hopewell up into the air. Stone Cold required treatment before carrying on but the defender only got a yellow card. Frosty picked up a yellow card too at the end of the half for a nibble at a defender. Go figure. Half time – Lincoln 1 Frickley 0.
Frickley came out and attacked with gusto in the second half. Half chances came and went until the 56th minute when Stone Cold Steve Hopewell initiated the move of the game. Winning the ball on the right touchline, Hopewell cut inside and whipped in a low cross for Haze who stole a march on his marker at the near post to steer the ball just past the keeper. Haze scoring his 20th of the season and his 13th in his run of scoring in 9th consecutive games to make it 1 each and game on.
It was all Frickley from this point, with dangerous crosses from Duggie and Frosty just lacking a final touch.
Jack Burton and Fab Bailey came on in the 67th and 73rd minutes respectively for Shawn Mitchell and Teddy Bloor, both of whom had put in a shift.
A great chance fell to Les Verts in the 86th minute when Stone Cold won the ball, fed the Iceman on the right who slid the ball to Duggie unmarked on the penalty spot but the ball skidded off Duggie’s boot as he tried to guide the ball home.
Unfortunately, on 88 minutes, against the run of play, the All Whites sent in a looping cross from for sub Matt Cotton to nod in from point blank range after evading the Green defence. Decent game management by Lincoln, despite a very late red card for Lincoln’s goal scorer Toyne, for a second yellow card, saw them over the line. Final score – Lincoln 2 Frickley 1.
Overall, a disappointing result, especially after recent performances, against a physical (maybe a touch over physical) side who gave the Greens no time to settle. However, it’s past now so we look for a reaction next week.
WEBMASTER MOTM – honourable mentions go to Jacob Hazel, who despite tight marking, still managed to continue his scoring run, and to the Iceman, who was a threat whenever he was given a chance. Patts and Mitch scrapped in midfield and Sebba was worth a couple of goals as usual. But after discussions with Shane, our honorary member of the media team, we agreed that Stone Cold Steve Hopewell takes the glitterball this week, for his tireless running, his smart assist for the goal and for just getting up from such a heavy first half challenge. Congrats, Big Fella!
125 were in attendance, and once again a good proportion of those were Frickley fans.
We go again at home next Saturday when Romulus are our visitors. Hope to see you there.