Lincoln City suffered FA Trophy heartbreak on Saturday afternoon after drawing 1-1 with York in the second leg of the semi final in front of a bumper crowd of 8,500 at Sincil Bank.
City had been in control of the game for 90 minutes, Sean Raggett giving them a 1-0 lead, bringing the tie level on aggregate. Lincoln dominated proceedings throughout normal time, but they couldn’t find the killer second goal.
Elliott Whitehouse almost scored after a knock down from Matt Rhead, but that was the closest Lincoln came despite having much of the possession.
In extra time Lincoln still looked more likely to score, but a rare York attack brought a scramble in the area. Jon Parkin fired the ball into the Imps defence, and the away fans cried handball. The referee waved the appeals away, but the linesman flagged and gave a penalty.
York slotted the penalty home to break Lincoln hearts, and despite having fifteen minutes to play City never looked like getting back into the game. A review of the replay shows the ball hit Luke Waterfall’s chest, Lincoln have truly been robbed of a first ever Wembley appearance.
It was a frenetic match punctuated with some odd decisions. Adam Morgan-Smith could have been sent off after gesturing to the Imps crowd, but the referee chose to be lenient. Unfortunately he didn’t have the same attitude for the disputed handball.
Fans leaving the ground were clearly gutted at the result, especially after a dominant display against a resolute but limited York side.
Lincoln’s cup run has seen them beat Nantwich, Gateshead, Welling and Boreham Wood on their route to the semi finals, but sadly failed to negotiate a York City side that are languishing in the bottom four.
Lincoln City have now been knocked out of two cups in seven days having lost at Arsenal in the FA Cup just seven days ago.
The promotion-chasing Imps have now won just once in five games and face two crucial matches in their promotion push, firstly against Boreham Wood on Tuesday.
Next Saturday Forest Green are visitors to Sincil Bank in a top of the table clash. They won 3-0 today against Wrexham to draw level on points with Lincoln, and another full house is expected in front of the BT cameras on Saturday lunchtime.