The name of Simeon Akinola is as well known to Imps fans as any of the current squad. The unfortunately forward had all-but signed for us in August, before a paperwork mix up led to the deal collapsing.
The poor lad had even been at Lincoln for a few days, refusing to be photographed in his Imps training kit before the move was officially verified. It wasn’t and he went back to his parent club. They’ve chopped managers and his future has remained unclear.
Martin Allen returned to the club for a fifth spell this term, renewing a toxic relationship that neither can say is over. They’ve got together and split up more than contestants on Love Island, but once again he comes in to try to save them. One of his first moves has been to tell Akinola to find a loan deal. Sorry Sim, your time is up.
That deal has to be with a National League club or below, he can’t sign for us, but he’s clearly surplus to requirements this summer. I have it on (relatively) good authority that had Rossi Eames remained at the Hive, Akinola could have moved to Salford on loan until January and then to us in January. The various changes of personnel changed all of that, but could he become Nathan Arnold’s team mate for a short while? Will Danny finally bring him to the club, or is his story destined to always be on of ‘what might have been’.
I put it to Twitter users earlier today, I’ll let you read some of their thoughts before I give my own.
In that case no, I think we should, and will be, looking for a proper push at autos next season, and as such the strike force will need upgrade not just stopgaps.
— Craig (@ValentinoMossy) March 21, 2018
With rowe, Williams, anderson, pett, stewart and the possible return of arnold is there the need for another attacking wide player? Also we have started to play without wingers. However the cowleys know him well. Can we get him now or gotta wait till summer?
— philip dainty (@philbauer81) March 21, 2018
Yes, he can add depth to the squad and the Cowley's know 100% how to get the best out of him.
— Luke Kempson (@LukeKempson1) March 21, 2018
Definitely. Without a doubt
— Gavin Andrews (@GavinAndrews83) March 21, 2018
Think that boat has sailed. If he isn't up to keeping Barnet in the league, I doubt he would be League 1 quality.
— Paul Stallebrass (@PaulStallebrass) March 21, 2018
Opinion is split, on one hand we have those who feel he could still benefit the side, but there’s other who think too much water has passed for it to be a good thing. I don’t buy into him being similar to our wingers, Akinola is more of a central striker, certainly one who can play in the 4-3-3 we’re trialling now. Danny wanted Simeon to play alongside Matt Green in a mobile centre forward role, the wide player was just a handy by-product.
Much depends on the next few weeks because, if we go up, the move won’t happen. Akinola is a decent League Two striker who hasn’t been deployed correctly at Barnet, I say that because Danny believes it and I believe him. If the manager thinks he’s worth a shot, or at least, then I’m right there with him. I know we haven’t seen it, not at Braintree nor Barnet, but he did enough to get into the Football League, he just picked the wrong club.
My gut feeling is he’s slipped from our grasp. If Danny had been truly coveting the player, surely he would have moved in January?
However, he isn’t going to get into a League One side and if we go up, he isn’t going to come to the Bank. Danny wants players that improve us in some way, but as a League One side the standard would get much higher. If Akinola were any other position I’d say we’ve improved too much for him to arrive now, but as a forward he’s filling the one position we haven’t strengthened since his stop/start summer move.
My gut feeling is he’s slipped from our grasp. If Danny had been truly coveting the player, surely he would have moved in January? I suspect, maybe there was an issue with Barnet though, the nature of the farce in the summer being the catalyst for below than average relations. After all, we know it wasn’t our fault, Barnet messed about over Tarpey and then looked to pass the buck. Our paperwork was sent in on time, that is fact. Barnet knew it, then when it all came out I suspect they decided Akinola had a higher value than he did. Now, they risk him buggering off for nothing and all they achieved was to ruin a young man’s career.
Simeon Akinola has been desperate to join Lincoln in almost a year, so I’m informed. He would love to have been part of the Cowley revolution, but perhaps he was meant to enter at an earlier stage. He missed his cue and now he’s resigned to always being the ‘fifth Beatle’, watching on from Dover or Dartford while we win trophies, earn promotions and make headlines.