FT: Lincoln City 2 Doncaster Rovers 0 - Conference men Power past Rovers

lincoln city vs doncaster rovers - james coppinger takes on nat brown
lincoln city vs doncaster rovers - james coppinger takes on nat brown

A dour display from Paul Dickov’s men saw Rovers crash to defeat at Conference outfit Lincoln City with Alan Power blasting home a wonder strike.

Rovers, who fielded two different XIs for the game, appeared sluggish as they failed to create many clear-cut chances throughout.

But that didn’t seem to be the case for Lincoln as they first pounced with a 56th minute Jordan Burrow header before Power fired in an unstoppable 81st minute volley.

The game at Sincil Bank saw James Bailey try his luck in the fourth minute but he sent an 18-yard half volley well over the bar for Rovers’ first chance of the game.

Skipper James Coppinger then had to head away a Ben Tomlinson chance after he connected with a Sean Newton corner in the fifth minute.

Lincoln looked to be gaining ground in the opening exchanges and growing in confidence as Rovers were forced to defend against their pressing counterparts.

Tom Miller failed to get the desired purchase on a backpost header as he directed Newton’s corner wide of the mark in the 13th minute.

The visitors then had a penalty appeal waved away as Lewis Ferguson went down in the box following good build-up play from Theo Robinson, Paul Keegan and James Bailey with 16 minutes gone.

Conner Robinson boasted the best chance of the half for the Imps but directed his header wide of the mark following a searching Tomlinson cross from the left.

Arnaud Mendy was the next to have an effort fire just wide as his drive evaded Ben Williams’ left-hand and the wrong side of the post in the 26th minute.

And it was Tomlinson who proved the main dangerman as youngster Mitchell Lund had his work cut out down Rovers’ right in the first half which remained goalless.

Lincoln began with a bang after the restart as Mendy saw a drilled effort crash against the side netting seconds into the second half.

And just as Rovers looked to be gaining some territory, Lincoln struck the opener as Jordan Burrow rose above Liam Wakefield to head home a cross from the right in the 56th minute.

Second half substitute Elliott Kebbie ghosted in behind his marker down the left before pulling it back into the danger-area, however, with no-one gambling for Rovers, Lincoln were able to clear in the 68th minute.

Caprice went close for the hosts with 10 minutes to spare as he jinked his way into the area before an outside of the boot effort was clawed away expertly by Jamie Ashdown.

However, from the resulting corner, Rovers failed to clear as the ball dropped to Power who needed no second invite as he blasted in a volley which looped over Ashdown with nine minutes to spare.

With Portugal just around the corner, Dickov will have plenty to think about before the training camp trip across Europe.

Attendance: 1,144


Harry Forrester started for Rovers following his injury-ravaged 2013-14 campaign as Dickov brought in ex-Manchester United goalkeeper Ben Williams.

Rovers once again opted for a changed XI for the second half of the game with free agents Elliott Kebbie, Nathan Tyson, ex-Blackpool striker, and versatile defender Cedric Evina - formerly of Arsenal, Oldham and Charlton - as well as ex-Leeds goalkeeper Jamie Ashdown all coming on after the restart.

Free agents Peter Clarke and James Bailey got another chance to impress with first half starts as youngsters Mitchell Lund and Lewis Ferguson also began.

Rovers first half: Ben Williams, Mitchell Lund, Luke McCullough, Peter Clarke, James Husband, Paul Keegan, James Bailey, James Coppinger, Lewis Ferguson, Harry Forrester, Theo Robinson.

Rovers second half: Jamie Ashdown, Harry Middleton, Ben Askins, Liam Wakefield, Cedric Evina, Dean Furman, Marc De Val, Elliott Kebbie, Richie Wellens, Nathan Tyson, Alex Peterson.