Friday, 23 November 2012
Storm in a T Cup.
In a rare twist of fate, Lincoln City are in knock-out competition two weekends running starting with the FA Trophy and, nosebleed time, the second round of the FA Cup the following Saturday.
In many ways it’s a shame to lose the momentum built up by the excellent league run but cup success is such a rare treat for City fans that we should not complain about two cup games turning up one after the other, bus style.
All the conjecture this week has been whether the manager will use the Trophy as an opportunity to give some fringe squad players a chance and give others a rest and, as David Holdsworth said in this weeks Echo there are sound reasons for doing so with several important ever-present’s on the cusp of a ban due to the number of yellow cards accrued.
Holdsworth is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t but at least the possibility of giving the also rans a game is a viable proposition now that there is a good quality look to the squad. If however the manager plays an unchanged team and a pivotal player gets a ban which will prevent him playing in the FA Cup the natives will not be best pleased, neither will they be if Holdsworth makes wholesale changes and City tumble out of the Trophy, a competition the Imps must think they have a chance of winning, all things considered.
I do have to say that you tend to have this sort of team selection conundrum when, say a Premier League club plays a relative minnow and, of course if they subsequently lose there’s hell to pay for the manager but I rather like the analogy. I think Lincoln City have rather overplayed the financial position and portrayed themselves as no better than any other clubs in the Conference which I think is not true for two reasons. Firstly City are full time and secondly the clubs capacity to attract much bigger gates than many of their rivals as witnessed by the huge increase in gate for the last home fixture. If the Imps can continue their good run those gates will increase still and, with the quality of football being so good, as well as winning games, the club could find themselves in a considerably better financial situation than they thought they would be. I do think smaller clubs raise their game at Sincil Bank but the prospect of, say 4000 noisy home fans giving them the heeby jeebies then the lure of playing at a former league stadium might not be so appealing.
Of course City are not a home this weekend but, such has been the Imps upturn the fans will turn out in numbers to see how they get on at Tamworth, not such a happy hunting ground previously but supporters will be in confident mood as they set off for the match and there really is every reason to be in a positive frame of mind, both players and fans alike.