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FT: Imps 3 Eastleigh 0

6 February 2016

Match report...

Although Craig Stanley missed out through injury, Matt Rhead returned from his recent knock for this Vanarama National League home game against Eastleigh. Rhead's return saw Alan Power drop back into midfield alongside Greg Tempest.

It was a very blustery afternoon as referee John Brooks lead the two teams out of the tunnel and once the toss was done, Eastleigh kicked off attacking the Stacey West Stand.

City were the first on the attack with Jack Muldoon winning the game's first corner in the third minute but Tempest's delivery fizzed across a packed area and out for a goal-kick.

Four minutes later a questionable throw-in decision ended with Eastleigh attacking before James Constable barged into Paul Farman and as the Imps responded Terry Hawkridge won a corner which was punched clear by Michael Poke.

City kept the ball in the attacking third though and after Chris Bush was tripped, Hawkridge saw his low free-kick hit the wall before the Eastleigh defence scrambled clear.

Shortly after the quarter hour mark Muldoon was inches away from connecting with a Hawkridge cross before the City number seven was taken out by Turley off-the-ball but none of the officials spotted the incident.

In the 22nd minute City's pressure paid off as, after Bradley Wood released Muldoon down the centre he was denied by Poke who sprinted out of the area to clear with his feet. The first to react to the loose ball though was MATT RHEAD and he superbly chipped home his 20th of the season with a first-time finish from 25 yards out.

Five minutes later a foul on Hawkridge earned Will Evans a ticking off but Tempest's ball in from the resultant free-kick was too strong and Rhead was unable to reach it at the back post. 

On the half-hour mark Josh Payne escaped a caution despite kicking the ball away in frustration after a free-kick was given in City's way whilst shotly afterwards players from both sides clashed after Bush was penalised for a foul. Jai Reason and Alan Power were both booked for their part before the free-kick was blazed over.

A couple of Eastleigh corners followed before Chris Bush and James Constable were spoken to by referee Brooks. With temperatures still on the up, two more flag-kicks for the visitors ended with a free-kick going in the Imps' favour.

City responded with Rhead and Muldoon both coming close following a Hawkridge free-kick with the ball somehow scrambled out for a corner. And when Tempest's delivery was half-cleared, there was JAMES CATON to fire a bullet drive into the top corner of the net.

Eastleigh immediately made a change with Jack Midson replacing Andy Drury and as a minimum of two minutes was indicated, a Hawkridge corner ended up with Muldoon winning a free-kick. 

This was played back to Bush and when he whipped in a deep centre, Rhead kept the ball alive and there to sweep the ball home was JACK MULDOON to make it 3-0 to the Imps.

Substitute Midson was booked before play restarted and City left the pitch to a rousing reception following a superb opening period.

HT: IMPS 3 EASTLEIGH 0

Neither side made any changes during the break so it was as you were as City restarted proceedings.

It was an enterprising start to the second half by City with Wood and Rhead combining to win a corner and when this was played in deep, Rhead pulled off a Cruyff-turn before he won a throw-in on the right.

Eastleigh's response was to win a corner but skipper Power was back to head clear; a City counter-attack then ended with Muldoon failing to find Caton. At the other end a deflected Midson effort lead to another Eastleigh corner but again Power dealt with the danger.

Muldoon curled a 55th minute free-kick inches wide for City and Evans headed a 56th minute corner straight at Farman as an end-to-end second half continued. A Payne back pass from just inside his half then went straight past Poke and out for a corner but Tempest's delivery came to nothing.

As the hour mark approached, Eastleigh centre-half Evans was booked following a trip on Hawkridge and after it had passed, Michael Green and Tony Lee replaced Dan Harding and Kaid Mohamed for the Spitfires. Shortly afterwards Wood picked out Muldoon who headed wide.

After a rare quiet spell Farman commanded his area superbly to claim a Reason corner and after the City stopper's punt caught the wind Turley headed out for a corner which McCombe headed inches over.

Farman then pulled off excellent one-handed save to deny Constable, who was becoming increasingly frustrated. City's first switch then came in the 78th minute with George Maris replacing James Caton for his Imps debut.

In the 83rd minute a Tempest free-kick lead to the 18th corner of the game and a couple of minutes later Rhead was inches away from reaching a Hawkridge cross. A swift City attack the ended with Power winning a corner before Robbie McDaid replaces Jack Muldoon.

Three added minutes passed without further incident with City's emphatic first half showing enough to see them pick up a second successive maximum haul and clean sheet.

FT: IMPS 3 EASTLEIGH 0



LINCOLN CITY
1 Paul FARMAN
2 Bradley WOOD
3 Greg TEMPEST
6 Chris BUSH
7 Jack MULDOON
8 Alan POWER
9 Matt RHEAD
12 Terry HAWKRIDGE
18 Lee BEEVERS
27 Jamie McCOMBE
28 James CATON

subs
5 Luke WATERFALL
19 Robbie McDAID (for MULDOON 87)
21 Matt SPARROW
29 George MARIS (for CATON 78)
13 Aidan GRANT

GOALS: RHEAD (22), CATON (40), MULDOON (45+2)

BOOKING: POWER (32)


EASTLEIGH
19 Michael POKE
4 Will EVANS
5 Jamie TURLEY
8 Josh PAYNE
9 James CONSTABLE
10 Jai REASON
14 Ben STREVENS
18 Andy DRURY
20 Dan HARDING
28 Kaid MOHAMED
31 Luke COULSON

subs
3 Michael GREEN (for HARDING 61)
12 Jack MIDSON (for DRURY 41)
16 Tony LEE (for MOHAMED 61)
24 Ollie GRIGGS
1 Ross FLITNEY
BOOKINGS: REASON (32), MIDSON (45+3), EVANS (59)



MATCH OFFICIALS

REFEREE: John Brooks
ASSISTANTS: Tom Harty & Grant Taylor
FOURTH OFFICIAL: Paul Evans


ATTENDANCE: 2,085 (66 visiting supporters)


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