Lincoln boss identifies Sunderland’s key man ahead League One clash

Lincoln City take on Sunderland in a league match for the first time since 1961 at Sincil Bank on Saturday, and new Imps boss Michael Appleton has identified the Black Cats key man ahead of the clash.

Previewing the game with the press after Lincoln went down 1-0 to Manchester United under-21s on Tuesday night, Appleton told Lincolnshire Live that although Sunderland offer threats all over the pitch, Max Power was the key man the Imps needed to negate if they are to get on the right side of the result. The former Oxford boss said: ‘They’ve brought a couple of players into the team over the last couple of weeks and obviously they have Max Power who has a big influence on the team and has scored two great goals.’

‘We know we need to nullify that threat, but I’ve seen enough in my two games so far to suggest we can give them a right good game.’

Power has been in great form this season, scoring the winner in the Black Cats Carabao Cup victory over Premier League Sheffield United and what turned out to be the winner last time out in League One, netting the second in a 2-1 home win over MK Dons.

The former Tranmere Rovers midfielder made a loan move from Wigan Athletic to the Stadium of Light permanent in January, and he provides a real goal threat from the centre of the park with his powerful long-range shooting.

 

However, Appleton was hoping the hostile atmosphere at Sincil Bank will inspire his players to end a poor run of only one win in eleven across all competitions and put Power and his teammates on the back foot. He said: ‘It’s challenging, but exciting as well. I’m sure the players will be absolutely chomping at the bit.’

‘I’m sure this place will be absolutely rocking on Saturday, and you never know.’


Our View

Power is a top League One midfielder and Lincoln have developed a nasty habit of giving attackers time to pick their spot from the edge of the box.

If they give Power room on Saturday, they could well find the ball nestling in the top corner of their net.

It should be an intriguing game, with Lincoln looking to stabilise after losing the Cowleys and Sunderland looking to keep up with pacesetters Ipswich.

Both teams are under pressure for differing reasons, and the game may well be won and lost on the mentality of the players and both clubs supporters in what will be a tremendous atmosphere at Sincil Bank.

 

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