FT: Imps 3 Telford 2

Match report...

Jake Sheridan returned to the starting line-up at the expense of Adam Smith for this important Blue Square Bet Premier clash against AFC Telford United at The 12th Imp Sincil Bank Stadium.

City kicked off attacking the Stacey West Stand on what was a blustery and bitterly cold afternoon and it was a cagey opening to the game with both sides taking their time to settle into proceedings.

The first half chance came in the seventh minute with Jamie Taylor firing a foot over after he was picked out by Power whilst Telford's response saw them win the first corner of the game which ended up seeing Ian Craney's chip into the box go straight out for a goal-kick.

Sheridan won City's first corner in the 11th minute and although Power's delivery was half-cleared, City kept the ball in the attacking third with Sheridan rifling a shot against the post. Hobson kept the ball alive and when he laid the ball into the path of Todd Jordan 25 yards out the midfielder powered home an unstoppable left-footed effort which flew past a flat-footed Ryan Young for his first goal in Imps' colours.

Telford's response saw them win a second corner which was cleared by Power but play quickly switched to the other end with the overlapping Miller crossing low for Jordan who in turn found Power who saw his shot charged down.

Sheridan and Miller were causing problems down the right as City pushed for a second but it was from the other flank that the next half-chance came with Tony Diagne seeing his deflected shot force Young to scamper across his line and palm away.

Young then tipped over a dipping Sheridan effort following some great build-up play from the Imps with Mo Fofana drilling over after Power's corner fell to the Frenchman 25 yards out. At the other end a lame Nathan Rooney shot was easily gathered by Paul Farman.

More good play from Sheridan saw him win a 32nd minute corner and this ended with Taylor having a snap-shot held by Young. At the other end a rare Telford attack saw Steve Jones fizz a shot a couple of feet over Farman's bar.

A foul on Craney by Jordan then gave the visitors a free-kick 35 yards out and although Rooney sliced his free-kick, the ball hit Steve Jones on the side of the head before flying past a wrong-footed Farman and into the back of the net.

It was an equaliser out of nothing and clearly knocked the Imps and the previously noisy fans, although Taylor came close to restoring the lead when he fizzed a low effort a foot wide after cutting in from the left.

In the closing stages of one added minute Boyce headed a Power corner behind before referee Ben Toner blew for the break.

HT: Imps 1 Telford 1

Both sides made a change at the break with Gomez Dali replacing Craig Hobson for the Imps whilst Steven Leslie came on for Nathan Rooney for Telford.

City were the first to press after the restart with Dali's first touch seeing him set up Taylor who appeared to be bundled over in the box but referee Toner waved play on, much to the frustration of the City number 10.

Miller then saw a deflected effort bounce a foot wide and when Power picked out Nat Brown from the corner, the Imps' centre-back had a header cleared off the line. Play quickly switched to the other end though and when a free-kick was played into the box, the ball was headed across the box for substitute Leslie unmarked to prod past Farman from six yards.

City's reply saw a long Miller throw cause problems for the Telford defence and with Boyce keeping the ball alive, he picked out Power who saw his volley kept out superbly by Young at full stretch. After the resultant corner came to nothing, Diagne required treatment after falling heavily.

Good work from Sheridan then saw him win a corner but Power's delivery was poor and came to nothing whilst at the other end a Jones cross was cleared behind by Brown for a Telford corner which was claimed by Farman.

Jake Jones for Mo Fofana was the Imps second switch in the 67th minute before a Sheridan cross led to another City corner which was played short to Taylor by Power before the ball went straight out for a throw-in.

A City free-kick then ended up with Boyce prodding into Young's gloves whilst at the other end a swift Telford attack ended up with James Spray curling a foot over. Marco Adaggio then replaced Steve Jones for the visitors.

With 13 minutes on the clock the Imps fans were back in full voice when Jordan launched a ball over the top and there was Taylor to run on it and plant a firm right-footed effort past Young to level matters.

Paul Turnbull replaced Jordan for City and Alex Meechan came on for Spray for the Bucks as the atmosphere cranked up a gear; a Miller throw and subsequent ball in the box then put the visiting defence under pressure before Dali was penalised for a push.

Dali then had a header from a Turnbull cross superbly kept out by Young before Miller won a corner which was headed goalwards by Brown before being cleared off the line. A Telford counter-attack then saw Aaron Williams blaze wide with just Farman to beat. Four minutes remained on the clock.

City made the most of this let-off as, a couple of minutes later ,Dali won the ball, played it to Taylor and he drilled in a superb effort which fizzed across Young before nestling in the bottom corner of the net for his second of the game.

Four minutes of added time was indicated by the Fourth Official and 90 seconds into these extra stages a Telford free-kick was headed away by Dali before Smith volleyed well over. An offside decision in the Imps' favour then calmed a few nerves.

All nerves were then calmed when, after Brown blocked an Adaggio cross and Diagne hooked clear, referee Toner brought things to a close.

FT: Imps 3 Telford 2

City: Paul Farman, Tom Miller, Andrew Boyce, Nat Brown, Tony Diagne, Todd Jordan, Mamadou Fofana, Alan Power, Jake Sheridan, Jamie Taylor, Craig Hobson.

subs: Dan Gray, Jake Jones (for Fofana 67), Paul Turnbull (for Jordan 78), Gomez Dali (for Hobson h/t), David Preece.

goals: Jordan (12), Taylor (77, 88)

Telford: Ryan Young, Will Salmon, Michael Briscoe, Ian Craney, Ryan Valentine, Christian Smith, Nathan Rooney, Phil Trainer, James Spray, Aaron Williams, Steve Jones.

subs: Steven Leslie (for Rooney h/t), Marco Adaggio (for Jones 73), Alex Meechan (for Spray 79), Tom Bradley, Jake Bennet.

goals: Jones (39), Leslie (53)

Referee: Ben Toner
Assistants: Simon Mather & Anthony Moore
Fourth Official: Justin Hayes

Attendance: 1,724 (12 visiting supporters)