The surprising form of Lincoln City – part 1

Since a rollercoaster 4v3 victory away at Stockport on January 22nd Lincoln City have embarked on a remarkable run of form. 6 wins from 7 games in 22 days has left many fans dreaming of the playoffs rather than dreading relegation. Compared to the rest of the season the results are pretty dramatic.

Date P W D L GF GA ± Points
7Aug10 to 15Jan11 21 5 4 12 17 32 -15 19
22Jan11 to 12Feb11 7 6 0 1 13 10 +3 18

Over the first 21 games the Imps averaged 6 points and a -5 goal difference for every 7 games played. The recent 7 game run has seen an improvement of 12 points and 8 goals (-5 to +3). That is a really spectacular upturn.

To me the season can be split into four stages. 1) the 9 games played with Chris Sutton as boss, 2) the 3 games under caretaker Dave Lindsey, 3) the first 9 games under Steve Tilson and 4) the 7 most recent games

Manager P W D L GF GA ± Points
Chris Sutton (Games 1-9) 9 2 2 5 5 11 -6 8
Dave Lindsey (Games 10-12) 3 1 0 2 2 4 -2 3
Steve Tilson (Games 13-21) 9 2 2 5 10 17 -7 8
Steve Tilson (Games 22-28) 7 6 0 1 13 10 +3 18

Looking at the splits it is remarkable how similar parts 1 and 3 of the season were. Tilson did have the same players at his disposal though, so could the improvement be due to the playing personnel brought in during January?

I’m going to keep these posts short so this is where I’ll stop. Part 2 will look at the defence and part 3 will look at the attack to answer the questions a) what can explain the 8 goal improvement b) is the team really as good as their last 7 results. Part 4 will be a brief guess as to what to expect over the rest of the season.

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