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Ipswich Town 2 v 2 Lincoln City
FA Cup
Saturday, 7th January 2017 Kick-off 15:00
Ipswich Town 2-2 Lincoln City - Match Report
Saturday, 7th Jan 2017 17:22

Tom Lawrence saved Town’s blushes with an 86th minute equaliser, his second goal of the game, as Vanarama National League leaders Lincoln City came within four minutes of a famous third round FA Cup upset at Portman Road but had to be content with a 2-2 draw. The Imps went ahead through Theo Robinson in the seventh minute, Lawrence levelled four minutes later before the Lincoln striker netted his second on 65 and the Imps looked destined to win it until Lawrence’s late goal rescued Town.

Boss Mick McCarthy made five changes with Dean Gerken, Jonas Knudsen, Andre Dozzell, Freddie Sears and Grant Ward all starting.

Skipper Luke Chambers and Cole Skuse dropped out of the squad having been doubts with knee problems, while Myles Kenlock also missed the game having suffered a calf injury at QPR.

Also not in the 18 was striker David McGoldrick, who is understood to have suffered a groin injury in training on Friday, while another frontman Leon Best was ill.

The Blues bench included 17-year-old left-back Pat Webber, who signed from Worthing at the end of last season, 19-year-old central defender or right-back George Fowler, who is from Ashfield near Debenham, Irish U19 international midfielder Adam McDonnell, 19, who made his league debut at Derby on the final day of last season, and strikers Shane McLoughlin, 19, an Irish U18 international, and England U18 international Ben Morris, 17.

Christophe Berra skippered in Chambers’s absence, while Lincoln named an unchanged team.

Town started brightly and won two early corners, but the 4,838 travelling Imps in the Cobbold Stand quickly had something to celebrate with their side taking the lead with their first chance of the game in the seventh minute.

Nathan Arnold sent over a teasing low cross from the right and former Derby striker Robinson got in between Adam Webster and Emmanuel to divert the ball past Gerken from close range.

But the Imps lead wasn’t to last for long. On 12 Lawrence picked up the ball just inside the Town half and brought it forward to the edge of the area unchallenged before hitting a low shot which went under Lincoln keeper Paul Farman and into the net to level the scores and settle more than a few nerves around Portman Road.

While it was a great run from Lawrence, who has now scored four goals during his loan spell from Leicester, Lincoln will be disappointed not to have got in at least one challenge and Farman will feel he should have done much better.

Neither side threatened again until 25th minute when Pitman hit an effort from distance, which flew well over.

Lincoln had been having more of the ball but without creating an opportunity, while the Blues had been very wasteful in possession with Dozzell having been unable to get into the game.

Imps midfielder Arnold hit a low effort from the left of the area which Gerken saved comfortably on the half hour, then moments later, following a freekick, the Blues keeper grabbed a dangerous bouncing ball in the area ahead of Robinson. The former Ram claimed he had been fouled as he went after the ball but referee Lee Probert showed little interest.

On 33 Berra made an important interception from a Bradley Wood cross from the right after a quickly taken freekick not far inside the Town half.

The visitors continued to have most of the ball, however without Gerken being forced into further action, and on 35 an Alan Power shot from the edge of the box deflected over.

Town began to have more of the ball as half-time approached and in the 43rd minute Dozzell hit a low shot which deflected just wide from the edge of the box after good work on the right from Emmanuel.

The resultant corner on the left led to another flag-kick on the right from which Pitman tried to replicate his overhead kick against Bristol City but failed to get any power on it and Farman claimed.

Neither side created a further opportunity before the whistle was greeted by cheers from the visiting fans and a few boos from the home support.

Town had started brightly and then quickly got themselves back on terms after the potentially serious blow of the early Lincoln goal but subsequently struggled to impose their superiority on the Imps.

Lincoln had subsequently been on top but without being able to create a chance from which they might have regained their lead.

The Blues had started to press more towards the break with Dozzell getting more involved but overall the non-league side will have been much the happier going off at the break and Town needed a much better second half to avoid a replay or worse still a giantkilling.

Soon after the restart Knudsen slipped on the Blues left gifting the ball to Robinson but the Danish international quickly got back to block the Lincoln striker’s cross.

The visitors threatened again in the 50th minute after a Knudsen cross from the left was cleared, Berra eventually cutting out Arnold’s cross. Soon after, Gerken grabbed a curling Robinson shot from the edge of the box.

The Town keeper was forced into a more serious save in the 56th minute when Terry Hawkridge fed the breaking Arnold after the Blues had lost possession on halfway but Gerken was out quickly to block and Berra cleared the danger.

Powerful Lincoln number nine Matt Rhead headed into the arms of Gerken on the hour, then soon after Dozzell played the ball into Sears’s feet inside the area and the ex-Colchester man hit a shot on the turn which flew only just wide.

On 62 Gerken put Bru under unnecessary pressure with a quick throw from which Lincoln quickly regained possession but the keeper comfortably claimed Sam Habergham’s shot from the right.

The visitors had looked the more threatening side throughout the second half and in the 65th minute they went back in front. Berra, under pressure from Rhead, headed Imps skipper Luke Waterfall’s long ball behind him and into the path of Robinson, who gleefully smashed home his second goal of the game to send the visiting fans wild.

With sections of the Town support singing ‘you’re getting sacked in the morning’ in the direction of manager Mick McCarthy Lincoln continued to take the game to the Blues with growing confidence, while the Championship side were unable to keep hold of the ball or put the Imps goal under any pressure.

Match Gallery: 8 photos

Lawrence hit a 30-yard freekick over from distance in the 74th minute as the Lincoln support taunted the Town fans with chants of ‘Championship, you’re having a laugh’.

Town finally began to put the visitors under some pressure as the game reached the 80-minute mark. Ward brought the ball into the area on the right and fed Pitman, who turned his shot well over.

With nine minutes remaining Jack Muldoon replaced two-goal striker Robinson, whose last visit to Portman Road saw him score as Derby beat the Blues 2-1 in October 2012, a game which led to former Town manager Paul Jewell’s departure the following day.

On 83 Lawrence crossed from the left and Farman did well to get down to his left to keep out Dozzell’s flicked header.

Aside from that Town hadn’t looked like getting back on terms until another brilliant Lawrence strike saved the Blues’ blushes. The on-loan Leicester man picked the ball up midway inside the Imps half and smashed a low shot which flew past Farman to his left.

Having got back on terms, Town now went after a winner, Lawrence and Sears exchanging passes on the left of the area before winning the first of two corners.

But there was another big scare for the Blues in the final minute when Lincoln broke quickly and, with a blatant trip on Berra having been missed by the officials, Alex Woodyard broke into the area from Arnold’s pass, however, Emmanuel did superbly to get back and use his strength to dispossess the Imps midfielder.

Seconds before the whistle Berra won a header from a Knudsen long throw on the right but Sears’s looped effort towards goal was straight into Farman’s arms.

Loud boos greeted the final whistle from home sections of Portman Road, while the Lincoln supporters celebrated the draw which might well have been an even more famous win but for Lawrence’s equaliser. Manager McCarthy was also booed as he made his way to the tunnel.

Having failed to impose themselves in the first half, the Blues were little better at the start of the season and worse once yet another defensive error had led to Lincoln’s second goal.

The Blues gradually started to make some headway but it took a piece of individual magic from Lawrence, quickly emerging as Town’s player of the year, to save what would have been considerable embarrassment and a first FA Cup defeat to non-league opposition since the January 1960 loss to Peterborough United at the same stage.

From there the Blues might even have won it with the Imps finally put under some pressure but were unable to claim a winner which would have been very harsh on the visitors, who might even have grabbed a third goal on the break but for Emmanuel’s interception.

The teams, who both go into the fourth round draw at 7.10pm on Monday ahead of Cambridge United’s tie with Leeds United, will meet again at Sincil Bank a week on Tuesday when the Blues will have to be much better if they are to avoid an embarrassing replay exit.

Town: Gerken, Emmanuel, Webster, Berra (c), Knudsen, Bru, Ward, Dozzell, Lawrence, Sears, Pitman. Unused: Bialkowski, Fowler, Webber, McDonnell, Douglas, McLoughlin, Morris.

Lincoln: Farman, Wood, Habergham, Waterfall (c), Power, Rhead (Long 90), Hawkridge, Raggett, Arnold, Woodyard, Robinson (Muldoon 81). Unused: Walker, Marriott, Miles, Fixter, McCombe. Referee: Lee Probert (Wiltshire). Att: 16,027 (Lincoln 4,838).

Danny Baker Live! Good Time Charlie's Back. Ipswich Regent Theatre, Ipswich, Thursday 10th May 2018 at 19:30. Get your tickets before they sell out.

Photo: TWTD

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ShropshireBluenago09 added 17:32 - Jan 7
Predicted a Lincoln win, fortunately Tom Lawrence saved us - a loanee - says it all really. Im sorry but i had a feeling Berra would be exposed today v Robinson's pace and Rhead's strength in the air, and so it proved. The sooner MM realises Berra is past it, the better.

bostonusablue added 17:33 - Jan 7
I've never been so disappointed to see a late Town equalizer. Looks like another late goals saves our useless Manager's ass. Just leave our club now.

surgery added 17:34 - Jan 7 your earlier post, your excuses for not comfortable win and positive post is eagerly awaited by us all

blueboy1981 added 17:35 - Jan 7
.......... only one answer - stay away until the Manager has gone.

That's the only thing that will have any effect. Sad - but TRUE.

We were up against another GOOD team ........... only 58 places below us in the League ...... !!!!!!!!!!!!!

Excuses, excuses, excuses, excuses ........... by the million, from a totally incompetent Manager.

Town4me added 17:36 - Jan 7
Jimmyjuan - I had the exact same reaction, disappointed when we equalised!

Londonblue52 added 17:36 - Jan 7
The only way to try and cope with what's happening at once wonderful club is to tell yourself you don't care. But of course this is just a coping mechanism and I know what a vacuum the current shambles is creating in my life. I need ITFC back. The ITFC which used to try and win games. The ITFC which brought excitement, edge of the seat stuff. Sadly I can't see this defer returning under a disinterested Evans and an overpaid McCarthy.

brittaniaman added 17:37 - Jan 7
All I can say is that McCarthy will still be here next SAT. for the Blackburn game !!!
He is to stubborn and arrogant to resign ?????? Evans will not sack him ??? so where do we go from here ???? our loan super player saved him again !!!!!
Brenner Wooley dare not ask any probing questions ???? he sounds a right wimp

martin587 added 17:39 - Jan 7
Absolute disgrace,out-played for most of the game.The Lincoln keeper gave us a life line.!

Taricco_Fan added 17:41 - Jan 7
How much more of this do we have to endure?

jpring89 added 17:41 - Jan 7
Seriously pathetic on all levels. Not interested in Town until there is a change.

MickCuresInsomnia added 17:41 - Jan 7
Mick, this is what you're doing to us..........JUST GO!!... YOU OUTDATED ONE DIMENSIONAL BORE

u2itfc added 17:41 - Jan 7
Earlier in the season I referred to MM's tenure as manager as being in it's "death throes". Seems its worse than that now. With ME and MM doggedly carrying on, it looks like we're in a Persistent Vegetative State - with Tom Lawrence playing the part of the Life Support System...

DurhamTownFan added 17:42 - Jan 7
Can anyone see any positives in this? I haven't seen many positives for a year or two. He'll pick an attacking or young side but then destroy it by making awful/no subs.

Just so badly needs a fresh look from another manager.

pragmatic added 17:42 - Jan 7
as bad as things are mcarthys not goin anywhere for at least 18momths so get used to it those who want us to lose hoping he gets sacked what privks!!

therein61 added 17:43 - Jan 7
Cannot believe the crap that comes out of Micks mouth in his post match drivel(just go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) Well played Lincoln consider yourselves unlucky to get a replay!!

dangerous30 added 17:44 - Jan 7
Look at the teams which went out off the FA cup today. Don't forget for teams like lincon it's their final. The players should hang their heads in shame and the manger should never pick them again. Sack the manger and sell the team.

bedsitfc added 17:44 - Jan 7
Is he still employed

blueboy1981 added 17:45 - Jan 7
Brittaniaman ....... he shouldn't be expected to put his job on the line (and that is what it would mean) - the only people who can change the situation is the Supporters by staying away.

Man up Supporters - and do the necessary. I don't care who I offend in saying so - because it's the truth, and ONLY answer.

dangerous30 added 17:47 - Jan 7
As for the fans who said it was a shamed we scored the equaliser hope you also leave with mick

iaintaylorx added 17:48 - Jan 7
Bit harsh Michael11, Emmanuel was different class today too!

Geoff added 17:51 - Jan 7
Well that is another low we have sank too,we are an embarrassment what will it take to sack that incompetent man. MICK OUT

NoelTheDub added 17:53 - Jan 7
For once he played a so called strong strong team to save his bacon and didnt have the b@lls to bring on youth and try win the bloody game.We are so sh=t it beggers belief the players most of them are league2 grade at best. Only one way this club is going and thats down and its rotting from the very top down please sort our club out now in january before its to late.Cant take any more sh@t saturdays even when we scrape a lucky win.

Dissboyitfc added 17:59 - Jan 7
People keep on about investment but how much have Lincoln spent on their squad?

Sick of excuses, just go!

carlo88 added 17:59 - Jan 7
If he says "A replay is the last thing we need", I think I'm going to self-combust. A mid-table Championship club, out of the League Cup, going nowhere, not getting promoted or relegated; he should be relishing the chance to go through.

multiplescoregasms added 17:59 - Jan 7
Just feck off McCarthy. You tool.

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