A tale of two penalties at the Montgomery Waters Meadow as Shrewsbury and Lincoln share the spoils.
Shrewsbury Town maintain their record of never losing a match this season when they have taken the lead. However, today’s performance was at times flat and uninspiring, as the fans made their frustrations known.
Ollie Norburn put Shrewsbury ahead from the spot nine minutes before the break. Tyler Walker equalised for the hosts just after the break from the same situation.
Town’s form is becoming worrying with no wins in their previous five matches in all competitions.
Sam Ricketts made four changes from the side that were beaten 2-0 by Doncaster in mid-week. The most surprising was the return of Ryan Sears who started a game for the first time in eight months owing to an ACL injury. Callum Lang, Dave Edwards, and Shaun Whalley were also drafted in. Sean Goss didn’t make the 18, whilst Donald Love, Ryan Giles, and Dan Udoh dropped to the bench.
The visitors settled well in the opening ten minutes. Joe Morrell found Nottingham Forest loanee Tyler Walker who whipped an effort from the edge of the box narrowly over.
At the other end, Josh Laurent, who is believed to be attracting interest from a host of Championship clubs, got his radar askew as he dragged a strike well wide.
Sam Ricketts was forced into an early change as Aaron Pierre limped off, and was replaced by his fellow Grenada international Omar Beckles.
The loss of Pierre appeared to galvanise Michael Appleton’s outfit. Max O’Leary was forced into a tremendous stop as Tyler Walker fired goalward.
Shrewsbury were awarded a penalty in the 34th minute. Ethan Ebanks-Landell was upended in the box, and Ollie Norburn lashed the ball into the bottom corner.
Town may feel extremely unlucky that they were not awarded another penalty seven minutes later. Former Fleetwood defender Cian Bolger appeared to trip Shaun Whalley, but the referee waved away any protestations.
Shrewsbury continued to force the initiative. Ro Shaun-Williams’ stooping header narrowly missed the target.
Whilst journalists in the press box had technical issues with the wi-fi at the beginning of the second half, there was certainly nothing wrong with Tyler Walker’s connection. The 23-year-old, son of former England international Des, beat Max O’Leary from 12-yards despite the fact that the Bristol City loanee went the right way.
The spot-kick arrived as Omar Beckles was adjudged to have fouled former Luton loanee Jorge Grant.
The game became flat as neither side appeared energised with both sets of supporters looking restless. But on the hour mark the Imps will wonder how they were not ahead. Jorge Grant’s strike was tipped onto the woodwork by O’Leary, and Jason Shackell also found the bar to be an unmovable force.
Shrewsbury failed to offer an attacking threat in the second half, with the most likely winner coming from Lincoln City. With 15 minutes of the match remaining, Tyler Walker was unable to beat Max O’Leary from a tight angle. Then, ex Blackpool full-back Neal Eardley was thwarted by O’Leary.
A disappointing second half for Shrewsbury reflected recent form. Town face the prospect of meeting Liverpool in the 4th round of the FA Cup, but they must navigate past Bristol City on Tuesday night. Lincoln are at home to Bolton in the league.
Attendance: 6,275 (558 away fans)
Team Line Ups
Shrewsbury Town: (3-5-2)
25. O’Leary, 5. Williams, 24. Ebanks-Landell, 2. Pierre (20), 12. Sears, 28. Laurent, 4. Edwards (75), 8. Norburn, 3. Golbourne, 7. Whalley, 9. Lang (67)
Subs: 1. Murphy, 6. Beckles (20), 11. Giles, 15. Walker, 17. Love, 23. Udoh (67), 35. Cummings (75)
Subs Not Used: 1. Murphy, 11. Giles, 15. Walker, 17. Love
Lincoln City: (4-4-2)
1. Vickers, 23. Eardley, 6. Bolger, 5. Shackell, 3. Toffolo, 28. Hesketh (44), 20. Coventry, 19. Morrell, 18. Grant, 17. Walker, 9. John-Jules (65)
Subs: 12. Chapman, 21. Smith, 22. Lewis, 24. Melbourne, 25. Elbouzedi (44), 29. Akinde (65), 37. Edun
Subs Not Used: 12. Chapman, 21. Smith, 22. Lewis, 24. Melbourne, 37. Edun
Other League One Results
Bristol Rovers 0 – 2 Doncaster
Burton 1 – 0 Fleetwood
Coventry 1 – 1 MK Dons
Ipswich 4 – 1 Accrington
Oxford 1 – 3 Rotherham
Peterborough 0 – 0 Gillingham
Portsmouth 2 – 1 AFC Wimbledon
Rochdale 2 – 0 Bolton
Southend 0 – 0 Tranmere
Sunderland 4 – 0 Wycombe