Sunday, 14 April 2013
City find their second half wind to silence the Lambs.
Manager Gary Simpson claimed in the after match interviews that Lincoln City were “excellent from start to finish” now who used to say those words? I’m not so sure about that although the team certainly started the game as if they meant business as did the large and noisy Sincil Bank crowd backing them. It was all going so well before the Imps express almost got derailed by a double whammy of not only conceding but conceding to an own goal, the effective Dan Gray being the unfortunate defender in the wrong place at the wrong time.
City took the remainder of the first half and much of the second to recover from this set back and really have to learn to take such adversity on the chin and just get over it, these things are going to happen. It does underline though that this is a young and relatively inexperienced City team. Whether Simpson will see enough in this side to build around for next season, whatever league the Imps are in and always assuming he is indeed the manager next term and plenty of City fans were saying before this game that he should not be.
Simpson also claimed that more football was played but it seemed to me that they could have kept the ball much more on the deck in the first half as, particularly Farman, found his clearances ballooning up in the air , heading almost vertically as the ball met the strong breeze before dropping like a stone, with snow on it. You can’t do anything to advance the attack with balls like that.
At the risk of sounding like a complete old geezer which of course I am, I was reminded of the Colin Murphy days as City turned round for the second half this time with that wind at their backs and they were a totally different proposition for Tamworth to cope with. City gave the Lambs such a battering it was really no surprise, and certainly a huge relief when the ever reliable Taylor got City level with an effort that seemed to take ages to find its way into the net.
Talking of surprises, the referee, who had spent most of the first half penalising City for the slightest of misdemeanours, so much so that I thought someone was bound to get sent off for two innocuous yellows, awarded City a penalty for, well a fairly innocuous challenge. Up stepped player of the season Alan Power. In a gutsy second half from the team, Power encapsulated that ethos to dispatch possibly the most important kick he will ever take in terms of what it meant to the club and its supporters, to send the home crowd into raptures and cast Tamworth into the pit of despondency.
It occurred to me as I waited for Match of the Day to start, later that evening, having absorbed our delicious pork loin chops, courtesy of Redhill Farm of Gainsborough, since you asked. You might consider a gin and tonic, a glass of white and a glass of red sufficient but, in view of the relief and pleasure of watching this performance I allowed myself a further Metaxa brandy so I was feeling pretty mellow and as Dusty Springfield came on my playlist, “I close my eyes and count to ten” (it could also have been Lou Reed, Perfect Day, I’ve got that too although really that would have been corny beyond belief) It occurred, that City had finally delivered in a season of not doing so and in so doing reminded us of what it is that makes it worth following this damned football club. Other pork loin chops and brandy available at your local emporium by the way.
I must be careful not to give the impression that City are home and hosed. They are not but in snatching that win, and the three points that go with it from the grasp of Tamworth and the other results largely going our way, unlike last week, things are looking much more rosy and City might be safe as soon as Tuesday if Stockport fail to win their game in hand.