Imps midfielder Jorge Grant wrote the headlines on New Year's Day as he scored the winner for Lincoln City in a 2-1 win over Peterborough United
City’s starting XI remained unchanged from the side which beat Ipswich Town 5-3, with the only change coming amongst the substitutes, Jason Shackell replacing Aaron Lewis on the bench.
Peterborough United: Pym, Butler, Woodyard, Beevers, Eisa, Maddison, Reed, Bennett, Toney, Boyd, Mason
Substitutes: O'Malley, Dembele, Ward, Copping, Cartwright, Barker, Burrows
Lincoln opened the game the more threatening side with Harry Toffolo’s cross forcing Christy Pym to travel off his line to palm the ball away in the opening minutes.
The Imps continued to threat Darren Ferguson's side as they won their first free-kick of the match six minutes in following a foul on Harry Anderson. Jorge Grant’s delivery was comfortably cleared by Peterborough however, City won another set-piece moments later. This time Grant played a sliding pass to Tyler Walker, again forcing Pym to travel off his line to collect the ball.
The Posh had their first shot of the game just before the 10-minute mark with Louis Reed’s long-distance strike going wide of Josh Vickers’ goal.
United won their second corner of the game in the 24th minute following an attacking break from George Boyd. Vickers was quick to come and collect the set-piece starting a quick counterattack which saw Toffolo break wide. The left-back produced an impressed delivery allowing Grant to produce a volley which went just wide of Pym’s goal.
A miss placed pass from Joe Morrell in the 28th minute allowed the visiting side to pick up the ball on the edge of Lincoln’s box. Inform striker Ivan Toney wasted no time in possession as he produced a curling shot past Vickers to give Posh the lead.
The Imps won their first corner of the game on the half-an-hour mark however, Grant’s cross was dealt with ease by the Peterborough defence.
With 10 minutes left of the first half, Lincoln continued to put pressure on the visitors as Michael O’Connor made an impressive run down the right-wing only for his delivery to not be met at the back post.
Anderson was brought down on the half-way line by Niall Mason as he tried to start a counterattack. The United defender was shown the first card of the game as the referee took his name in the 37th minute.
Pym pulled off an important save for Peterborough five minutes from half time as Walker broke free onto Hesketh’s flick inside the United area, winning the Imps a corner in front of the visiting fans. The Posh goalkeeper was called into action moments later as Grant’s delivery from the set-piece was placed perfectly at the back post.
Lincoln won a freekick in the middle of Peterborough’s half following a handball from George Boyd who saw yellow in the 45th minute.
With the Imps having had the most shots out of the two sides in the opening 45 minute, they were unlucky to go into the break a goal down.
Half Time: The Imps 0-1 Peterborough United
Lincoln started the second half by making a change with Jack Payne coming on for O’Connor in midfield. The Imps were attacking-minded from the off with Toffolo providing an early cross to challenge the Peterborough defence.
Just ten minutes into the second half, former Lincoln midfielder Alex Woodyard received a yellow card for a late challenge Toffolo.
Joe Ward, another former Lincoln player, came on for the visiting side as they made their first change in the 57th minute replacing the already booked George Boyd.
Vickers pulled off a great save from Maddison’s across goal strike on the hour mark, however, the strike wouldn’t’ have counted anyway as the linesman had his flag up for offside.
Hesketh received Lincoln’s first card of the game in the 61st minute as he stopped a breakaway from Maddison inside the visiting sides’ territory. The winger was replaced by striker John Akinde in the 66th minute as City searched for an equaliser.
Just one minute after the substitution, City equalised in fashion thanks to a magnificent strike from Walker. The striker received a lovely pass from Akinde on the edge of the box allowing him to find the top corner of Pym’s goal.
Peterborough made their second substitution of the game with Siriki Dembele coming on for Mo Eisa in the 70th minute.
In an unbelievable turn of events, Dembele’s first action in the game was receiving a red card for a coming together at the half-way line. Lincoln’s Joe Morrell was cautioned by the referee for his part in the action.
10 minutes from the end, the Imps saw centre back Bolger booked for a challenge on Maddison who attempted to break through the City backline.
With both sides searching for a winner, the atmosphere quickly increased as City broke forward in the 84th minute. The ball was played into the box allowing Akinde through, but it was Toffolo who met the ball, going ever so close and hitting the upright.
The Imps continued to pile on the pressure, again breaking in the 87th minute, this time winning a corner. Grant’s ball found Toffolo on the edge of the box who played a lovely ball through to Bolger. The Irish centre back took the shot on the volley, only for it to go straight into Pym’s hands.
With City pressing forward yet again, Anderson was the man to provide the next opportunity. The winger produced a powerful header from Toffolo’s cross forcing Pym to make another top draw save.
They left it until the 90th minute, but Lincoln finally got their winner thanks to Grant who had been impressive all game. The midfielder scored his second goal for the club from a 22-yard free-kick causing pandemonium in the home end. Posh goalkeeper Pym had no chance of stopping the strike as it smashed into the back of the net.
The Imps showed their character as they saw the game out to win an important set of three points following five minutes of added time. Jack Payne and Dan Buttler both received a yellow card during the added minutes.
Full Time: Lincoln City 2-1 Peterborough United
1 Josh VICKERS
3 Harry TOFFOLO
4 Michael O’CONNOR
6 Cian BOLGER
16 Michael BOSTWICK
17 Tyler WALKER
18 Jorge GRANT
19 Joe MORRELL
23 Neal EARDLEY
26 Harry ANDERSON
28 Jake HESKETH
21 Grant SMITH
5 Jason SHACKELL
10 Jack PAYNE (O'Connor 45')
12 Ellis CHAPMAN
20 Callum CONNOLLY
24 Max MELBOURNE
29 John AKINDE (Hesketh 66')
GOAL: Walker 67', Grant 90'
Booked: Hesketh 61', Morrell 71', Bolger 80', Payne 90'
1 Christy PYM
3 Dan BUTLER
4 Alex WOODYARD
5 Mark BEEVERS
7 Mo EISA
11 Marcus MADDISON
14 Louis REED
16 Rhys BENNETT
17 Ivan TONEY
21 George BOYD
24 Niall MASON
25 Connor O’MALLEY
10 Siriki DEMBELE (Eisa 70')
23 Joe WARD (Boyd 57')
28 Bobby COPPING
30 Samuel CARTWRIGHT
31 Kyle BARKER
32 Harrison BURROWS
GOAL: Toney 28'
Booked: Mason 37', Boyd 45', Woodyard 55', Butler 90'
Red Card: Dembele 71'
Referee: Christopher SARGINSON
Assistants: David BENTON and Abbas KHAN
4th Official: Robert ATKIN
Attendance: 10,025 (1,740 Peterborough fans)