Whilst Marcus Marshall replaced the suspended Hamza Bencherif for this Vanarama Conference fixture against Torquay United at Sincil Bank Stadium, Todd Jordan was named in the squad for the first time this season with the utility player amongst the substitutes.
Richard Wigglesworth was the man in the middle and once the pre-match formalities were done and dusted, City kicked off attacking the Bridge McFarland Stand.
The Imps were quick on the attack with Ben Tomlinson winning a corner on the 30 second mark but after Sean Newton's delivery was punched clear by Martin Rice, the visitors attacked before Josh Wakefield drilled straight at Nick Townsend.
After things quietened down, the game sprung into life in the eighth minute when Duane Ofori-Acheampong latched on to a forward ball, flicked it against Nat Brown who was pulled up for hand ball by the referee's assistant. Mr Wigglesworth, after awarding Torquay a free-kick and with Gulls players surrounding him, duly brandished a red card to the City defender.
Arnaud Mendy dropped back alongside Tony Diagne in Brown's absence and as the Imps looked to respond Alan Power had an effort saved by Rice before Jon Nolan had a centre blocked.
From the Imps next attack Tomlinson was clumsily bundled over in the area by Dale Tonge and with Mr Wigglesworth up with play he immediately awarded a penalty. Tonge escaped punishment for his offence before Tomlinson neatly slotted home from the spot.
Torquay's response saw Luke Young fire well over before being denied by Townsend after intercepting a stray Nolan pass. At the other end Jordan Burrow was pushed in the back by Angus MacDonald but Newton's free-kick sailed straight out of play for a goal-kick.
Things quietened down again as the half went past its midway point with chances at either end at a premium; a deflected Courtney Richards effort leading to a Torquay corner being the only incident of note.
MacDonald headed over another Courtney Cameron corner in the 29th minute whilst shortly afterwards Tonge drew a foul out of Nolan just outside the corner of the City box. Cameron's delivery was headed out for a corner by Nolan which ended up with Townsend saving a header through a crowd of players.
Torquay kept up the pressure and in the 33rd minute they levelled when Cameron picked out Ofori-Acheampong who stabbed past Townsend from six yards out.
A couple of minutes after the restart Young was booked for a foul on Tomlinson but City, a man down since the eighth minute, were struggling to get to get into the game with Ofori-Acheampong somehow heading wide from a foot out following another dangerous corner.
A knock to Louis Briscoe brought about a break in play before the United man was replaced by Toby Ajala. The Fourth Official then indicated that a minimum of three minutes were to be added on.
HT: IMPS 1 TORQUAY 1
Whilst the 10-man Imps emerged unchanged, Torquay made another switch prior to the start of the second half with Jordan Chapell replacing Josh Wakefield.
It was a quiet opening to the period with neither goalkeeper tested in the first 10 minutes, with Torquay enjoying the better of the possession.
On the hour mark, Richards fired over following patient build-up play by Torquay whilst a minute later substitute Ajala crashed an effort against the crossbar. It wasn't long before the Gulls were pressing forward again though with Richards firing a low effort past Townsend to edge his side in front.
Before play restarted Karl Ledsham and Todd Jordan replaced Jon Nolan and Marcus Marshall and good work from Tomlinson saw him win a corner but Newton's delivery was easily claimed by Rice.
Torquay extended their lead in the 72nd minute when a swift counter-attack ended with Young squaring for Ofori-Acheampong who slid the ball past the onrushing Townsend for his second of the game.
A couple of minutes after the restart Conner Robinson replaced Jake Caprice with a formation switch to three at the back; one of the three, namely Sean Newton, then picked up a caution for a late challenge on Cameron.
Robinson's first taste of the action saw him have a header saved by Rice but the City substitute and his marker Dale Tonge clashed heads with both players needing attention as a result. Robinson came off worse in the incident and was down for a good six minutes before being helped to his feet and off for further treatment.
The Fourth Official indicated a minimum of ten minutes were to be added on. In the first of these Cameron headed over as Torquay pressed for a fourth. Robinson then emerged from the dressing room and returned to the field of play.
Ashley Yeoman for Duane Ofori-Acheampong was Torquay's third and final substitution whilst the last action of note saw sponsors' Man of the Match Alan Power curl over from 25 yards.
FT: IMPS 1 TORQUAY 3