Match Preview: Lincoln City v Bucks
AFC Telford United travel to fellow-strugglers Lincoln City on Saturday in a crunch Blue Square Bet Premier fixture.
Although Lincoln have spent much of their history in the Football League, this is not their first spell in the non-league game. Their most recent stint in the Conference came when City became the first club to suffer automatic relegation from the Football League in 1987. The Imps regained their Football League place at the first attempt and then remained in the League for 23 years until their relegation at the end of last season. Almost 8,000 supporters watched their final League game against Aldershot Town in May.
The Bucks will be a looking to avenge the 2-1 defeat by Lincoln in the club’s first home game of the season. The Imps, then managed by Steve Tilson, won that match courtesy of a late double from Telford legend Kyle Perry (pictured) who has since returned to the New Bucks Head on loan until the end of the season. Telford’s reply came through a stunning strike from the now-departed Greg Mills in the dying minutes, but it proved too little too late.
Tilson was sacked earlier in the season following a 4-0 defeat by Tamworth – Lincoln’s eighth defeat of the campaign. He was replaced at the helm by David Holdsworth, a former centre-back who played for clubs including Watford, Sheffield United and Bolton Wanderers and who was also capped once for England at Under-21 level. Holdsworth’s previous managerial role was at Mansfield Town where he stabilised the club in the wake of relegation from the Football League.
Despite Holdsworth’s appointment the Imps have continued to struggle in their attempts to pull away from the relegation zone and they remain just one point ahead of Telford with 32 points from 33 matches. They had a busy transfer deadline day, however, with four new faces arriving at Sincil Bank. Utility player Peter Bore, striker Jefferson Louis and winger Nialle Rodney all signed permanent deals with the club whilst Blackpool striker Louis Almond also joined on loan until the end of the season.
This is AFC Telford United’s first trip to Lincoln City but Telford United made three visits to Sincil Bank. The first, on 17th November 1984, in the FA Cup First Round saw Telford claim a 1-1 draw. The second, almost exactly 24 years ago on 20th February 1988, ended 0-0 in a GM Vauxhall Conference fixture whilst Telford’s only loss came on 14th October 2003 in the LDV Vans Trophy, Lee Mills scoring our only goal in a 3-1 defeat.
Lincoln City Fact-file:
Address: Sincil Bank Stadium, Lincoln, LN5 8LD
Directions: Take the A38, A50, A453 and A52 to join the A46 towards Lincoln. Follow the A46 into Lincoln (which leads onto the High Street) and the ground is well-signposted from there. Lincoln Central train station is around a 15 minute walk to the ground. Come out of the station and turn right to go down the road. About 30 yards ahead on the right are some steps and a bridge over the railway. Go over the bridge and once on the other side follow the road down to the ground.
Admission Prices: Away fans are housed in part of the Co-op Community Stand at one side of the pitch. Prices are Adults* £16, Concessions £12 and Under 15s £6. *These prices are for tickets purchased prior to matchday. Tickets purchased on matchday will cost £2 more for adults and £1 more for concessions and Under 15s. Concessions apply to over 60s and students. Official Programme £2.50.
Parking: Follow the signs for 'away coaches' which lead onto the A158 South Park Avenue where there is plenty of street parking, although it is a 10-minute walk to the ground. Otherwise follow the signs to the ground where (if early enough) fans can park behind the Stacey West Stand at a cost of £4.
Disabled Access: Contact the club on (01522) 880011 for details.
Facilities: There is a range of food available including Chicken Balti Pies, burgers and Lincolnshire sausage and bacon rolls. Away supporters are admitted to the Supporters Club (called the Trust Suite) behind the South Park Stand and there are plenty of pubs to be found along the High Street towards the town centre.
Colours: Lincoln City: Red and white striped shirts, black shorts, red socks, green (GK); Telford: Yellow shirts, yellow shorts, yellow socks, blue (GK).