I recently caught up with Lee Frecklington in preparation for the Port Vale programme, but got a chance to talk to him about the punishing Christmas schedule which sees the Imps play five games in fifteen days.
We played Newport this weekend, followed by Crewe tomorrow. On Saturday we face Cambridge, whilst New Year’s Day sees us host Port Vale, before a match against Everton you might have heard a bit about.
For a team such as Lincoln and a manager such as Danny Cowley, it presents a challenge. The level of preparation that goes into a Lincoln game is no secret, but with such an intense schedule it heaps a lot of pressure on the players. There’s the video analysis, individual work on opponents and patterns of play and in the case of some players, different positions to work on.
Tom Pett has to look at a winger’s game, as well as his usual midfield role. That will apply to other players too and I asked Lee how they’d go about facing that challenge. He revealed that by hook or by crook, the hard work will be put in.
“The games might come thick and fast over the festive period, but it won’t affect the amount of work we put in off the pitch. It’ll be tough to squeeze it all in but rest assured, we’ll get the work done.”
“There’s no corners cut at our place, the gaffer might keep us there late at night or he’ll get us there early in the morning, but there’s no way he’ll let us go into a match without the same level of preparation we have for every single game at any other time of the year.”
“No stone gets left unturned and we’ll make sure the level of preparation is the same for the busy period games just as it will be for the first game of the season, or the last.”
Lee was chatting to me after a busy day, training ahead of the Newport win, then off to the press conference before attending a child’s party at the club. He squeezed me in quickly before going about his father duties at home, but we chatted not only about the Christmas period but also the transfer window, new year’s resolutions and his favourite moment of the year, not only as a Lincoln player but also as a Leeds fan.
You can read all about it on New Year’s Day, but for now, Merry Christmas!