Danny Cowley’s Lincoln City side host Accrington Stanley in their League One opening day fixture today.
The Imps have been on the road for their last three opening games earning points against Woking, Wycombe and Northampton under Danny and Nicky's management.
City played a handful of Championship sides throughout pre-season however, Cowley’s men returned from their summer break facing non-league sides Gainsborough and Lincoln United in the Community Festival of Lincolnshire Football, comfortably winning both games.
A week later Sheffield Wednesday visited Sincil Bank in what would be Steve Bruce’s last game as the Owls’ manager. Young forward Jordan Adebayo-Smith scored City’s only goal as the Imps lost 3-1 against a strong Wednesday side.
Lincoln beat Reading in Marbella as part of their summer training camp before facing Stoke and Scunthorpe on their return to England at the end of July.
The final pre-season clash Cowley’s side faced was against Nottingham Forest XI featuring first team players such as Jason Cummings and Daryl Murphy.
Defender Callum Johnson spoke to Accrington Stanley’s website ahead of this weekend’s clash at Sincil Bank.
“Pre-season has been good, all pre-seasons are tough otherwise you are not going to get the strength in your legs to get fit for the matches,” said the 22-year-old.
“The last few games have been competitive and it’s what you need. We got a good result against Preston who are a good side and I got an assist as well.”
Johnson went on to explain that he is glad the pre-season period is now over and the focus is on playing games for points: “I can’t wait for the start of the season when it actually matters.
“Lincoln will be a tough game, it’s a hard place to go, they have come up, they will have loads of confidence similar to us last season.
“We started off well after our promotion and we need to go there and show them what we can do.
“Every season is a big season for me, I just go into every game wanting to win.”
Despite competing in different leagues last season, City faced Accrington Stanley during the 2018/19 Checkatrade Trophy at the Wham Stadium.
Jamie McCombe managed to find the scoresheet in the 60thminute, four years and 102 days after his first City goal, which was against Derby County in August 2004, a club record between first and (currently) last goals for the Imps.
During the 2017/18 SkyBet League Two campaign both sides won their home fixture with the Imps winning 2-0 at Sincil Bank in December 2017.
Matt Green and Matt Rhead were both on the scoresheet for City.
One to Watch – Sean McConville
Now in his fifth season with Accrington following his return to the club in 2015, Sean McConville is a fan favourite at The Wham Stadium.
The 30-year-old started his career with Skelmersdale before signing professional terms with Accrington Stanley in 2008.
He signed for Stockport County in 2011 after three-years with Stanley before joining Rochdale on loan in 2012.
McConville joined non-league side Barrow on a short-term deal in September 2012 before going on to feature for Stalybridge Celtic in the then named Conference North.
Chester signed the midfielder in 2014 where he scored four goals in 41 league appearances during the 2014/15 season.
During Accrington’s promotion season, McConville scored 12 league goals in 43. An improved goal scoring record followed during the club’s first season in League One with the 30-year-old finishing the season with a tally of 15.