Three first half goals are the undoing of Grantham Town in friendly with Lincoln City

Grantham Town's wall look on as Lincoln's Matt Sparrow curls a free kick goalward. Photo: Toby Roberts
Grantham Town's wall look on as Lincoln's Matt Sparrow curls a free kick goalward. Photo: Toby Roberts
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Grantham Town’s first pre-season friendly saw the Gingerbreads concede three times in the first half to run out 3-0 at The Meres.

A warm evening and a fair sized crowd, including a good smattering of travelling Imps fans, greeted the players who got off to a fast and furious start.

The first real attempt at goal came from Grantham’s Danny Meadows in the fifth minute, but his effort into the wind rose over the target.

Five minutes later, Town team-mate Michael Emmott’s cross-cum-shot also flew over the bar as he slipped when he let fly.

Grantham keeper Jake Turner’s first involvement saw him collect easily from Callum Howe’s excellent cross into the box.

Neither side showed much in the way of organisation, with City equally as likely to play the long ball game as Grantham, but as the pace steadied down midway through the half, the visitors began to have more of the chances.

Lincoln had an opportunity in the 20th minute but the alarmingly quick Jack Muldoon was unable to react quite quick enough to do anything with a whipped in cross, and Town were able to clear the danger.

At the other end, Ben Saunders found himself in front of goal with a short window of opportunity to fire home, but he miskicked his effort.

On 23 minutes, Turner got a hand to Muldoon’s close range shot after the Lincoln number seven broke away and beat the last defender. Turner made another good one handed save a minute to deflect a strong header from a penalty box scramble.

Muldoon threatened again in the 26th minute, but this time his pace alerted the referee’s assistant to an offside decision.

However, the Imps went in front a minute later. Turner once again got a hand to the shot, but Alex Simmons’ effort still went in off the inside of the post.

Lincoln doubled their lead in the 37th minute with an out-of-the-blue long range strike from John Nolan that bounced under and in off the diving Turner.

Grantham stalwart Rhys Lewis’s 38th minute shot rolled wide of the far post, and team-mate Liam Read did well to round a couple of defenders five minutes later, but his final touch was far too easy for City keeper Paul Farman to collect.

With the thought of half time sausage and chips on supporters’ minds, Grantham conceded a third goal in the 90th minute when Alan Power lived up to his name and planted the ball in at the far post direct from a corner kick.

It was all change for the second half with both sides making changes, especially Lincoln who in effect brought two squads. Former fans’ favourite Gio Carchedi took to the pitch once again for the Gingerbreads.

The second half began almost half-heartedly and the entire 45 minutes was a far less scintillating affair – a bit of damp squib in fact.

There were a few half-chances at each end but neither side ever really looked liked scoring, with Turner making a couple more saves, but nothing came from the National League side to really test him or the Gingerbreads.