Alan Power replaced the cup-tied Elliott Whitehouse and Jamie McCombe came in for the suspended Sean Raggett as the Imps welcomed League One Oldham Athletic to Sincil Bank in the Second Round of the Emirates FA Cup.
Gavin Ward was the man in the middle for this Monday evening fixture played in front of the BT Sport cameras and following a minute's silence in memory of the victims of the plane crash which claimed the lives of a number of players and staff from Brazilian side Chapecoense, play got underway with Oldham kicking off.
There was a fantastic atmosphere in the early stages with a meaty challenge on Power earning Cameron Dummigan a second minute yellow card. The resultant free-kick into the Oldham box appeared to strike the arm of a visiting defender but referee Ward waved play-on.
Oldham's first attack saw a sixth minute shot on the turn by Freddie Ladapo easily held by Paul Farman whilst three minutes later there was a break in play as Oldham's Ryan McLaughlin was in need of treatment.
In the 13th minute Oldham forced the first corner of the game but from Oli Banks' delivery, Paul Green got in a poor header which went well wide whilst at the other end Terry Hawkridge was denied by Connor Ripley after Theo Robinson had helped on a long Farman clearance.
After an end-to-end spell which saw the visitors come close through Ladapo, City took the lead in the 22nd minute. Hawkridge was the man with the cross from the left cross, Rhead was there with a knock down and there to head home was THEO ROBINSON.
Less than two minutes later the lead was doubled when a defensive slip let in TERRY HAWKRIDGE who kept his cool before neatly slotting past the advancing Ripley to send Sincil Bank into raptures.
On the half-hour mark a superb move by the Imps down their left flank ended with Robinson heading over the bar and as the visitors' frustrations grew referee Ward was forced to speak to Banks as well as skipper Peter Clarke.
Ten minutes before the break a rare Oldham attack ended with Banks blazing well over from range and shortly afterwards Farman palmed away a low McLaughlin drive before the City defence cleared their lines.
Just before the Fourth Official indicated that a minimum of two minutes were to be added on there was a glorious chance for Robinson following a Rhead flick-on but he stabbed wide rather than in.
HT: IMPS 2 OLDHAM 0
There were no changes in personnel as the Imps restarted proceedings and City were quickly out of the traps, and within a couple of minutes extended their lead.
Alan Power was the architect, winning the ball midway inside the Oldham half and he duly fed THEO ROBINSON who neatly lifted the ball over Ripley for his second of the game.
Oldham looked for a quick response with a low effort going wide from 25 yards and in a bid to shake things up Lee Croft was introduced for Carl Winchester in the 55th minute.
A curling volley from Rhead was held by Ripley a couple of minutes later whilst at the other end Farman pulled off a superb save to tip over a Lee Erwin effort. City defended well from the resultant corner.
Billy McKay for Jamie Reckord was Oldham's second change as the clock showed 66 played whilst a couple of minutes later treatment for Paul Farman brought about a break in play.
When play resumed the visitors reduced the arrears when a driven corner was headed powerfully home by skipper Peter Clarke. Harry Anderson came on for Terry Hawkridge a couple of minutes later.
This certainly raised the visitors and three minutes after Clarke's goal, substitute McKay slotted home after some hesitant defending in the City box to set up a grandstand finish.
It was all Oldham now with Ladapo nodding a cross over before Burgess headed a corner wide of the City left hand upright. The visitors' final change saw Darius Osei come on for Freddie Ladapo with 13 minutes on the clock.
Jack Muldoon replaced Theo Robinson in the 80th minute before Anderson fired narrowly over from a tight angle. Good work from Muldoon then saw him win a free-kick on the left flank but Arnold's delivery was claimed by Ripley.
Erwin picked up an 84th minute caution after hacking down Anderson and just before six added minutes was indicated an Oldham break ended with Banks firing wide before the visiting player was booked.
Three minutes in to the extra stages Farman commanded his box to claim a looping cross from the Oldham right before the City stopper held another cross, this time from McLaughlin from the right.
With fog descending quickly, Anderson was booked for kicking the ball away after Wood was pulled up for a foul and when the resultant free-kick was pumped into the mix a scramble ensued before City were awarded a free-kick.
Referee Ward brought play to a close once Farman launched the ball forward to cap a memorable evening of FA Cup football at Sincil Bank.
FT: IMPS 3 OLDHAM 2
1 Paul FARMAN
2 Bradley WOOD
3 Sam HABERGHAM
5 Luke WATERFALL
8 Alan POWER
9 Matt RHEAD
11 Terry HAWKRIDGE
27 Jamie McCOMBE
28 Nathan ARNOLD
30 Alex WOODYARD
31 Theo ROBINSON
7 Jack MULDOON
10 Adam MARRIOTT
12 Harry ANDERSON
22 Jack FIXTER
24 Jack McMENEMY
29 Jack WEATHERELL
21 Richard WALTON
GOALS: ROBINSON (22), HAWKRIDGE (24)
1 Connor RIPLEY
3 Jamie RECKORD
5 Cameron BURGESS
8 Oli BANKS
10 Carl WINCHESTER
12 Freddie LADAPO
16 Cameron DUMMIGAN
19 Lee ERWIN
26 Peter CLARKE ©
27 Ryan McLAUGHLIN
28 Paul GREEN
2 Josh LAW
9 Billy McKAY
11 Lee CROFT
18 Darius OSEI
24 Ousmane FANE
31 Charles DUNNE
13 Chris KETTINGS
BOOKING: DUMMIGAN (3)
REFEREE: Gavin Ward
ASSISTANTS: James Bell & Nick Hopton
FOURTH OFFICIAL: Andy Madley
ATTENDANCE: 7,012 (415 visiting supporters)