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Lincoln City 0-0 Pilgrims

Coca Cola League

With Michel Kuipers having returned to Brighton & Hove Albion, Nathan Abbey out on-loan at Leyton Orient and youngster Chris Wright suffering from a strained hamstring, manager Steve Evans brought in keeper Conrad Logan as an emergency signing from Championship side Leicester City for this Boxing Day derby at Sincil Bank. Unlike his Lincoln counterpart, Evans also chose to put his two most prominent former Imps on the bench - Ben Futcher and Jason Lee watched the action from the sidelines. Whilst Keith Alexander had no such reservations about using former Pilgrims Lee Beevers and Richard Logan in his starting line-up. One Imp that Evans wasn't allowed to use was striker Francis Green - currently on-loan from Lincoln - as the terms of his loan agreement ruled him out of this match. Lincoln supplied the early pressure. Richard Logan tested his namesake with a long range shot, but the nineteen year old keeper made a straightforward save. At the other end Alan Marriott had to be alert to keep out Chris Holland following an attacking move down the left wing by Danny Thomas and Austin McCann. On the half hour Boston had a penalty claim turned down when Lawrie Dudfield tumbled to the ground after running into the box and apparently being held back by Jamie McCombe. But despite Boston protests the referee waived play-on.

A few minutes later Derek Asamoah produced a fine drive which required an equally fine save from Logan who tipped the ball round the post for a corner. Just before half time Paul Ellender headed a Danny Thomas free-kick just wide. Lincoln had the first real chance of the second half when Richard Logan broke free through the middle, but his final shot was not good enough to beat Conrad Logan. A good combination between Simon Rusk and Danny Thomas ended with a cross to Alan White that was headed down to Stewart Talbot, whose shot was kept out by the diving Marriott. Logan made a good save on 77 minutes to pluck Paul Mayo's free kick out of the air as it headed towards the top corner. Lincoln finished strongly with good efforts by Nat Brown and Asamoah. But time ran out as the match ended without any goals to bring cheer to either side's supporters in the 7077 crowd. The result left Boston sitting in 11th place one point ahead of Lincoln, which remarkably is precisely the same situation as it was after the Boxing Day matches last season.

United team: Conrad Logan, Lee Canoville, Paul Ellender, Alan White, Austin McCann, Stewart Talbot, Chris Holland, Simon Rusk, Danny Thomas, Lawrie Dudfield, Julian Joachim. Subs not used: Bradley Maylett, Ben Futcher, Noel Whelan, Jason Lee, David Galbraith.

Match report copyright © Ken Fox 2005. Photograph copyright © Pat Everitt 2005.