Waide Fairhurst was back in the starting line-up and Adi Yussuf came in for his first start as the Imps welcomed Aldershot Town to Gelder Group Sincil Bank Stadium. Nick Wright and the suspended Ben Tomlinson were the players missing out.
It was a grey and wet afternoon as referee Adrian Holmes led the two teams out of the tunnel and once he'd tossed up with the captains things got underway with the Imps kicking off attacking the Bridge McFarland Stand.
City started brightly and in the third minute Sean Newton fizzed in a great cross from the left with Yussuf inches away from connecting six yards out. At the other end Brett Williams fired a low effort well wide from range.
A strong challenge by Jon Nolan on Craig Stanley earned the City midfielder an eighth minute ticking off whilst shortly afterwards Paul Farman kept the Imps in the game with three superb saves in quick succession to deny Jaydon Gibbs, Stanley and Lewis Young.
Luke Foster picked up a 13th minute caution for a foul on Jordan Roberts who certainly made the most of things as he rolled around on the soggy turf in front of the Co-op Stand
Aldershot's next attack saw Andrew Boyce divert a low Stanley effort behind for a corner which was easily cleared with City's response seeing Pope do well to hold a rasping Nolan drive. Todd Jordan then pressured Mark Molesley into conceding a corner but this ended up with Pope claiming Alan Power's delivery.
The wet and windy conditions were certainly playing their part with players from both side slipping over at regular intervals, but it was a foul on Yussuf which gave Newton the chance to unleash a free-kick which deflected off the wall and out for a corner.
In the 33rd minute Nat Brown was caught by Williams' arm but nothing untoward was spotted by the officials. Two minutes later Yussuf went close after muscling his way through the visiting defence and the striker volley just past the opposide post from the next attack.
Five minutes from the break Fairhurst cut in from the right before sending a skidding effort a foot wide whilst a couple of minutes later a Jordan cross saw the ball bounce around in the area but wouldn't fall to a City player and the Shots cleared.
The half ended after one additional minute.
HT: Imps 0 Aldershot 0
Both sides emerged unchanged for the start of the second half and Aldershot were the first to press and when a cross came in from the left, Brown mistimed his header with the ball crashing straight against his arm. Referee Holmes had the easy decision to award a penalty with Williams duly doing the honours from the spot, sending Farman the wrong way.
Bohan Dixon was brought on for Todd Jordan three minutes later before Power was booked for a sliding challenge on Roberts.
Aldershot won the half's first corner as the Imps continued to struggle but they had a chance from a set-piece when Manny Oyeleke felled Fairhurst 20 yards out. Newton, however, curled his left-footed effort over.
Nick Wright replaced full debutant Yussuf shortly after the hour mark before a deflected Foster effort was well claimed by Pope.
Wright's first involvement saw him latch on to a Nolan cross only for his shot on the turn to go straight at Pope who was becoming the busier of the two goalkeepers as the game headed towards its final quarter.
With Boyce pushed forward and Foster dropping back, Nolan had a shot deflected behind following good work by Miller. Another corner quickly followed with Boyce having an effort blocked on the line before Fairhurst had a shot charged down
Martin Rowlands replaced Jaydon Gibbs as they made their first switch in the 73rd minute and this seemed to stem the City flow as the following 10 minutes remained scrappy and bereft of goalscoring chances.
With four minutes remaining a long Miller throw-in ended up with Foster having a shot charged down before Wright headed a cross over. Matt Paterson then replaced Jordan Roberts as the visitors ate up some more seconds in the final minute.
A foul on Boyce by Goodman gave the Imps a free-kick which came to nothing as the Fourth Official indicated three additional minutes. Goodman then left Wright grounded for a free-kick in a similar position but Fairhurst could only curl over.
FT: Imps 0 Aldershot 1