Shrewsbury Town are out of the Papa John’s Trophy after suffering a heavy defeat against high-flying Lincoln City.
It is viewed by many as the competition that distracts from the league schedule, and Steve Cotterill certainly demonstrated that his priorities lie elsewhere as he made 10 changes from the side that drew 1-1 with Charlton at the weekend.
Only Ethan Ebanks-Landell survived from the draw against the Addicks, with the likes of Harry Burgoyne, Scott High, Jason Cummings, Jan Zamburek, and Donald Love all coming into the eleven. Ryan Sears was a welcome return on the bench after missing weeks of action with an ankle injury.
The much-changed Shrewsbury line-up was powerless to resist as Lincoln City dominated the contest. Goals from Anthony Scully and Zachary Elbouzedi gave the visitors a 2-0 lead inside 40 minutes. Shillow Tracey who returned after four games out with an unspecified injury, reduced the arrears before the break.
But the Imps bulldozed their way through the opposition in the second half. Former Blackburn academy product Remy Howarth put Michael Appleton’s side 3-1 ahead – Jorge Grant completed the scoring from the spot with 12 minutes remaining.
It was all a bit too easy for Lincoln with Scott High caught napping. Anthony Scully delivered for Zachary Elbouzedi, but his header was clawed away by Harry Burgoyne. Scully was certainly the dangerman – the Republic of Ireland U21 international struck the woodwork with a fine strike from a 25-yard free-kick.
Shrewsbury were firmly camped inside their own half. Harry Burgoyne was keeping Town in the contest as the ex Wolves stopper thwarted Elbouzedi and Gotts in quick succession. In the 18th minute, Lincoln deservedly took the lead. The impressive Zachary Elbouzedi motored forward and slipped Anthony Scully through on goal who applied the simple finish.
Shrewsbury finally woke up from their deep slumber. Brentford loanee Jan Zamburek combined with Scott High, and the latter made Alex Palmer work. Anthony Scully continued to pose a threat – this time he bent a shot goalward which Burgoyne managed to claw away.
Town had just managed to get a foothold, when a swift counterattack proved their undoing. Former Peterborough winger Harry Anderson made ground down the right flank and crossed into the danger area. Elbouzedi ghosted beyond Donald Love and headed home – which is probably what Town wanted to do in the more figurative sense.
Yet perhaps it wasn’t quite the right moment to head back to the car park, as the home side reduced the arrears in the 44th minute. Jason Cummings provided the lay-off, and Shillow Tracey was able to sweep the ball into the back of the net.
Howarth’s close-range effort made it 3-1, whilst Jorge Grant converted from the spot after Ro Shaun Williams was the guilty party.
No point in dragging it out any longer as Town are eliminated from the Papa John’s Trophy. Town travel to Hull on Saturday, whilst Lincoln welcome Sunderland.
Team Line Ups
1. Burgoyne, 17. Love, 24. Ebanks-Landell (45), 3. Golbourne, 22. J. Daniels, 4. Edwards, 6. Goss, 13. Zamburek, 25. High (65), 20. Tracey, 35. Cummings (85)
Subs: 5. Williams (45), 12. Sears, 19. Barnett (65), 30. Caton (85), 33. Iliev, 36. Lloyd, 37. Aris
Subs Not Used: 12. Sears, 33. Iliev, 36. Lloyd, 37. Aris
1. Palmer, 24. Gotts, 22. Eyoma (83), 3. Melbourne, 30. Roughan, 17. Howarth, 18. McGrandles (45), 20. Johnson, 26. Anderson, 11. Scully, 25. Elbouzedi
Subs: 9. Hopper, 10. Grant (45), 16. Walsh, 31. Long, 33. Cann (83)
Subs Not Used: 9. Hopper, 16. Walsh, 31. Long