There’s lots of fervour around Sincil Bank today as we approached our moment in the spotlight, our 8.00pm date with BBC One.
Many are touting it as the biggest match of the season, but in reality, it isn’t anywhere close. In terms of what is at stake, Forest Green away and Tranmere at home were certainly much bigger. Tonight is all about enjoyment, it’s a moment to savour in front of a full crowd and a partisan home support.
I don’t believe there is any pressure on the boys to go out and win the game. Ipswich were expected to beat us in the first match and they’ll be hot favourites again this evening. You would hope that perhaps they’ll be a bit more prepared having seen first-hand how good we are, and if their weekend result is anything to go by then we have a fight on our hands. We knew that anyway.
The game will be won or lost around a couple of key battles. Firstly, we will need to keep Tom Lawrence under lock and key. Danny Cowley spoke of the danger from all areas of the park, and although he is right we know from experience it is the Leicester loanee who poses the biggest threat.
For Lincoln, it will be the physicality of Matt Rhead up front that dictates how successful we are going forward. Ipswich struggled to contain the big man ten days ago, and that left all sorts of space for Robinson, Hawkridge and Arnold to exploit. If they struggle with him again then I’d wager, we will at least register a goal.
From me there’s no expectation and no real pressure to get a positive result. The only thing we do expect to see from the players is a committed and combative approach to the match, something that has become a hallmark of a Cowley team. As long as we give it a go for 90 minutes (or 120 if the score requires it) then they will have done the City proud.
So I hope Bob and the board, Danny and the backroom staff, Big Rheady and the players all enjoy our night in the spotlight, and most of all I hope our wonderful fans (the hardcore 3,000 and the new faces) all enjoy the best attended match at Sincil Bank in 15 years.
Don’t forget to support your truly by reading my review on The Lincolnite