Tonight, all eyes were on Cheltenham Town as they stood between Bury and the top spot in League Two.
Who can remember the last time we weren’t top of the league? MK Dons knocked us off briefly sometime before Christmas, but in truth we’ve made being top our ‘thing’. That was all in doubt tonight, not through a fault of our own, but a quirk of the fixture list.
After every drew level on 35 matches, Bury got a chance to strike a psychological blow and reach the top spot for the first time all season. If they’d won they would have been ahead of us on goal difference alone, albeit with us having a game in hand. Exeter City showed that games in hand are not as certain as three points in the bag.
Because of this, all eyes were on Whaddon Road. Even though the result wouldn’t matter if we won our games, this evening proved we do care what everyone else does. This notion that ‘we look after ourselves’ is all well and good from the management, but as fans we look at everyone else.
Scott Wharton, the Imps turned Shaker, gave them an early lead and it looked ominous for City. After all, Bury are a very good side, they attack with pace and in numbers. Danny Major is a real talent and Nicky Maynard is a born goal scorer. They’ve been on a great run and looked bankers for the win after the goal.
Another player familiar to some of us then provided is with a moment to cheer. Billy Waters had been linked with a move to Sincil Bank in the summer of 2017, but he’s a Robin now and he grabbed a 33rd minute equaliser.
The scores remained that way, even though the stats show Bury to have applied real pressure in the dying stages of the match. Cheltenham are unlikely saviours of Lincoln City, but they’ve given us a chance to now strike our own psychological blow.
If (and it’s a big if) we can beat Yeovil this weekend, we’ll go into the weekend five points clear of Bury on the same number of matches. They face a tricky trip to Stevenage, whereas we follow up with the home tie against Oldham. Potentially, if things worked out really well for us, we could be eight points clear of them a week today.
Coulda, woulda, shoulda. All conjecture of course. In the mean time, Mansfield Town face trips to Crawley and Port Vale as they look to reel us both in. is there a slip up there?
Our run of draws might not have pleased everyone, but this evening’s result goes to show that nobody will win all their games and in terms of the title race, we’re still top dog.
Here’s some responses from the Imps faithful on Twitter.
Cheltenham Town, I salute you.
— Mandi Slater (@impette) March 5, 2019
Did the pressure of going top get to Bury tonight? Either way, without even playing @LincolnCity_FC have proved their inner strength by being top and staying top since August.
For any doubters left out there. Don't ever doubt our desire, ability and courage to see this through.
— Andrew Helson (@andyhelson) March 5, 2019
Thank you kindly @Longyy32 👏🏻
— Craig Coe (@craigcoeyo) March 5, 2019
Cheltenham Town, we salute you 👏 👏 👏
— Paul bee (@BuzzerimpBee) March 5, 2019
— tom broughton (@lcfctom15) March 5, 2019
Second best team in red and white in this league! Cheers for the favour boys 🍻
— Ryan Willows (@RWillows) March 5, 2019
Thanks Cheltenham ….great help for @LincolnCity_FC Wishing you well for the rest of the season.
— PeteH (@pete9259) March 5, 2019
Obviously would've preferred a Cheltenham win but Bury not getting all three points was the main thing. Onto Friday night now! https://t.co/GonOFXFTDg
— What Dan Said (@AKA_DanThompson) March 5, 2019
So, Friday. Could go 5 points clear. Both Bury and Mansfield with away games on Saturday. Who is going to hold their bottle…?
— Peter (@SincilBanker) March 5, 2019