Stevenage are a solid physical side who rely on set pieces and winning the first and particularly second ball, rather than any real pace and counter, to carve out their wins. No surprises then that a dead ball would open the scoring as a misplaced clearance found Carayol, one of the few bright spots in a thus far drab game. His cross struck the arm of Foster in the box and the assistant flagged for a penalty to the unadulterated joy of the 401 travelling Imps. Grimes made no mistake with his 17th of the season to make it 1-0 Imps on 33 minutes.
The equaliser came on 37 when Hunt & Clapham appeared to have dealt with a Borough move down our left. Calpham then inexcusably played across his own box, with Carson making a magnificent save only for Wilson to blast the rebound inside the top right hand corner.
Alas the Imps had been the architects of our own destruction with a defensive error allowing them back into the game. We were also shooting ourselves in the foot by insisting on lumping the ball forward, straight down the middle to two short but quick strikers, when carpet football and use of the flanks had served so well prior to their equaliser.
On the hour a Wilson whistler was too hot for Carson to handle, as the ferocious drive from the edge of the box scorched home. 2-1 Stevenage a well deserved brace for Wilson. Moments later Grimes kicked the underside of a defenders foot as he tried to finish from close range. Prolonged treatment in the back of the net was to no avail and he was replaced by Andy Hutchinson back from the wilderness so to speak.
Carayol then had a run where he beat 3 all ends up but his ball forward was too far ahead of Scott Spencer. All in all another good day for Hone who dealt with the aerial presence and Clapham, who did well bar the error for the goal. Injuries to Grimes and Howell adds to our existing shortfalls suggesting we need to do much ahead of the Rotherham home game next Friday.
Yes they lost 5-0 at the Spireites today but a backlash could be well and truly on the cards. The Imps are certainly running out of opportunities to put the case to their season ticket holders for renewals. With Facey and Grimes out things are certainly looking bleak. So Can Tilson get Hunt to stay if he is even fit after going off today? Can he get in the midfielder we need? Can Hutchinson put a strong case for a contract given Celtic are not that interested in retaining his services?
Henry Foster Roberts Laird
Wilson Long Bostwick Mousinho
Substitutions Winn on for Long 58, Ashton on for Laird 58 May on for Reid 87
Substitutes 27 Maamria, 5 Ashton, 7 Murphy, 12 May, 13 Byrom, 17 Winn, 20 Beardsley
Lincoln City 4-4-2
Kelly Hone Watts Hunt
Carayol Clapham O’Keefe (Y) Howell
Substitutions McCallum on for Howell 14 Hutchinson on for Grimes 70 Green on for Hunt 83
Substitutes 20 Musselwhite 2 Green 9 McCallum 22 A Hutchinson 25 Hughton 31 Fuseini 40 Kanyuka
Stevenage 2-1 Lincoln City (HT 1-1)
Boro Wilson 37 & 60
Imps Grimes (pen) 33
Att: 2732 ( 401 Imps)
The Match Stats
Stevenage 53 % Lincoln City 47 %
Shots on target
Stevenage 3 Lincoln City 1
Shots off target
Stevenage 8 Lincoln City 8
Stevenage 5 Lincoln City 5
Stevenage 9 Lincoln City 10
Stevenage 1 Lincoln City 2
Stevenage 4 Lincoln City 5
Stevenage 0 Lincoln City 1