Match Report : 20/10/2012


Fresh from the 4-2 win at Wrexham, manager David Holdsworth was able to name an unchanged starting line-up as the Imps got their 2012/13 FA Cup with Budweiser campaign underway with this Fourth Qualifying Round tie against FC Halifax Town at The 12th Imp Sincil Bank Stadium.

With Cup rules stating that seven substitutes could be named, John Nutter and David Morgan found themselves back in the fold; the former following injury and the latter having extended his youth loan from Nottingham Forest.

With the sun starting to break through the cloud cover, referee Chris Kavanagh started proceedings with the visitors kicking off.

It was a quiet opening, although some crunching challenges early on from Halifax let the City players knew they were in for a tough afternoon of Cup football; Jamie Taylor, Dan Gray and Conner Robinson all feeling the force.

The first half chance came in the sixth minute when good work from Adam Smith down the right saw him cross into the danger area but Taylor was penalised for a push as he jumped at the far post.

Town's response saw them win a corner following a long-throw but Paul Farman was well positioned to claim Chris Worsley's header after Ryan Toulson swung in from the right. As City replied, Smith was upended by Jon Worthington who earned himself an 11th minute caution for his troubles. The resultant free-kick ended up seeing Taylor drill straight at Matt Glennon.

At the other end a second Halifax corner which saw taker Paul Marshall slip over before slicing his delivery straight out of play. A foul on Robinson then earned Danny Lowe a ticking off.

In the 19th minute Peter Gilbert pulled up clutching his hamstring as he chased back to cover following a long clearance from Glennon and the left-back looked to be in some discomfort as he was helped to the touchline by Kev Oxby. John Nutter was quickly brought on as his replacement.

Nutter was quickly in the action, forced to defend a corner which ended up seeing Farman gather at the second attempt following a downward Phil Bolland header at the back post. Farman was then forced to push away a Gareth Seddon drive as the visitors pushed forward again.

Shortly afterwards, Seddon crashed a 25-yard effort against the crossbar with Farman beaten whilst at the other end a dangerous Smith centre saw Liam Hogan get in front of Gary Mills before seeing his attempted headed clearance hit his own woodwork.

Halifax were certainly looking sharp on the break with a cross from their left being headed wide by the experienced Worthington but City themselves were looking threatening with Tom Miller heading a Nicky Nicolau corner over after good persistence from Robinson had seen him force the flag-kick.

One additional minute passed without incident so it was all-square as referee Kavanagh blew for the break.

HT: Imps 0 Halifax 0

A change for City prior to the start of the second half saw Colin Larkin replace Conner Robinson and he was quickly in the action winning a throw-in on the left. This set-piece eventually ended with skipper Mills firing a volley wide of the mark.

Referee Kavanagh had words with Bolland five minutes in following a clumsy challenge on Taylor and when this was half-cleared, Nicolau warmed Glennon's hands with a rasping left-footed drive from 25 yards.

A Smith cross was then flicked off Taylor's head by a visiting defender and from the next break down the right, a neat back-heel from Larkin released Smith who saw his centre at pace fly across the box and out for a goal-kick on the opposite side.

Mills was left grounded following a crunching challenge from Bolland although Mr Kavanagh spotted nothing untoward before allowing treatment to be administered. A spell of Halifax pressure then saw Gregory flick a header wide.

With the hour mark gone David Morgan for Nicky Nicolau was City's final change before a Taylor centre was headed behind for a corner by Bolland. The Imps kept up the pressure with Miller having a shot blocked by Chris Worsley who as then left holding his leg as he and Andrew Boyce went for the loose ball.

City came close to breaking the deadlock in the 66th minute when a ball into the area saw Mills cause problems before one Halifax defender hammered the ball against a team mate before the ball flew inches wide for a corner. When this corner came in, a goalmouth scramble somehow saw the visitors emerge with their goal in tact.

Two more corners quickly followed as the Imps stepped up the pressure again and after Glennon repelled the danger on both occasions, the veteran stopper superbly denied Mills from a curling Morgan cross.

Jason St Juste for Chris Worsley was Halifax's first change in the 72nd minute and his first touch saw him slide in at the back post to slice a Gregory cross well wide.

A quiet spell ensued before  Simon Hackney replaced Gareth Seddon fo the visitors 
with the game in its last nine minutes. John Nutter was then booked after dragging Gregory to the floor.

A minute later Glennon claimed a Mills centre under pressure from Larkin and Taylor whilst at the other end a St Juste cross flew across the six-yard box and inches past both Gregory and Marshall.

There were three added minutes in which to snatch a late goal and in the early stages of these extra stages, a lunge from Morgan on Toulson saw the teenager called across by referee Kavanagh who was quick to produce a red card for the Nottingham Forest loanee.

This turned out to be the last action of note with the two teams set to battle it out again on Tuesday evening in a replay at The Shay.

FT: Imps 0 Halifax 0

City: Paul Farman, Peter Bore, Andrew Boyce, Tom Miller, Peter Gilbert, Gary Mills, Dan Gray, Nicky Nicolau, Adam Smith, Conner Robinson, Jamie Taylor.

subs: John Nutter (for Gilbert 22), Alan Power, Graham Hutchison, Colin Larkin (for Robinson 46), David Morgan (for Nicolau 62), Mamadou Fofana, Jake Turner.

bookings: Nutter (83)

sending off: Morgan (90+1)

Halifax: Matt Glennon, Ryan Toulson, Scott McManus, Liam Hogan, Phil Bolland, Danny Lowe, Chris Worsley, Paul Marshall, Jon Worthington, Lee Gregory, Gareth Seddon.

subs: Phil Senior, Jason St Juste (for Worsley 72), Simon Hackney (for Seddon 81).

bookings: Worthington (11)

Referee: Chris Kavanagh
Assistants: Tom Bramall & Matt Walsh
Fourth Official: David Hunt

Attendance: 1,940 (505 visiting supporters)