Lincoln City host Mansfield Town this Saturday in their 18th league game of the season. The Imps are currently second in the SkyBet League Two table with 36 points to their name, however they have a game in hand over league leaders MK Dons who have 37 points.
City had their SkyBet League Two fixture against Yeovil Town postponed last Saturday due to the Glovers having a number of players called up to international duty.
Danny Cowley’s men were last in action when they hosted Northampton in the first round of the FA Cup two weeks ago. The Imps won 3-2 in dramatic style thanks to Bruno Andrade’s 92nd minute winner.
City’s last league game was at the start of November when they beat Forest Green Rovers 2-1. John Akinde scored Lincoln’s 4000th home league goal after just eight minutes when he lobbed the ball over on-loan Rovers goalkeeper, Robert Sánchez.
Inform Reece Brown equalised for the visitors just four minutes after Akinde’s opening goal. On-loan youngster Kellan Gordon made an instant impact coming off the bench and scoring his first Imps goal as he netted City’s winner in the 72nd minute.
Mansfield Town have been on an impressive unbeaten run winning five of their previous 11 SkyBet League Two games. Their last defeat came against Exeter City in September when Tyler Walker scored a consolation goal in the 61st minute.
The Stags suffered defeat to Charlton in the FA Cup first round replay on Tuesday night losing 5-0. They had previously held the SkyBet League One side to a 1-1 draw at Field Mill on Remembrance Sunday in the original tie.
Mansfield’s recent fixtures has seen them beat Scunthorpe United 3-2 in the Checkatrade Trophy. Former Tottenham midfielder Calum Butcher scored 32 minutes after Nyle Blake’s 21st minute opener for Town.
The Iron managed to bring the score back to 2-2 in the 89th minute before former Slovenia U19 star Timi Elšnik scored the winner for David Flitcroft’s side in the 90th minute.
Last six league games: WDWDWW
League position: 5th
David Flitcroft spoke to the press after the Stags' 5-0 defeat in their FA Cup first round replay at Charlton Athletic on Tuesday.
The former Swindon boss said: “MK Dons, the way they play, they’re the team to be reckoned with for me. Lincoln have been consistent with what they’ve done this season.
“They’ve won a lot of football matches and have done a lot of winning. We just want a referee that’s strong. It’s a place that’s been built up and has that noise and atmosphere.
“It’ll be a tough task but we are excited by the challenge and I will look forward to going in there and competing.”
The last time the two sides met was in the Checkatrade Trophy when Lincoln hosted Mansfield in September. The visitors won 2-1 despite Matt Rhead opening the scoring after just six minutes.
A similar situation happened during the 2017/18 Checkatrade Trophy when The Imps travelled to the One Call Stadium, however Danny Cowley’s side came out as winners in the group stage.
Alfie Potter scored six minutes into the clash before Lincoln’s Elliott Whitehouse equalised five minutes before half time. Ollie Palmer gave City the lead 11 minutes from time before Matt Green added a third in the 90th minute.
Lincoln went on to win the trophy at Wembley last year when they beat Shrewsbury 1-0 thanks to Elliot Whitehouse’s 16th minute strike.
One to Watch – Tyler Walker
Currently fourth in the SkyBet League Two scoring charts, Tyler Walker will be the one to watch for Mansfield this Saturday.
Walker has scored eight goals and picked up two assists as well as having a 50% shots on target ratio from his 44 this season.
The 22-year-old is the son of former England defender Des Walker and has been capped by the Three Lions U20 side on seven occasions, scoring a brace against Czech Republic in 2015.
The young forward is currently on loan at the One Call Stadium from SkyBet Championship side Nottingham Forest. Walker has scored four goals in 33 league appearances for the Reds, a team he joined at the age of 10.
Walker has had previous loan spells with Burton Albion, Stevenage, Port Vale and Bolton Wanderers.