nicely in seventh place in Division Four at the turn of 1987, three
wins from 23 matches not only sent the Imps crashing to the foot of
the table, it also saw them crash out of the League for the first
time in 67 years.
It was imperative that City bounced back at the first
time of asking. The decision was made to remain professional, work
would continue on a new St Andrews Stand and Colin Murphy, the
last man to put a promotion-winning side together at Sincil Bank,
returned at the helm.
"Murphys Mission" was about to commence.
Murphy had to build virtually from scratch with only
four players remaining at the Club from the previous season. With the
Boards backing, he gradually drafted in a squad of players who
he felt would be capable of diving into the murky depths of the
unknown and emerging with the pyramidal Conference trophy come May.
After a more than tough baptism at title-favourites
Barnet (2-4 with eight players making their City debuts) and
big-spending Weymouth (0-3 in the first game at their new ground) you
got the impression that, with City sitting at the foot of the table,
a few of the Conference aficionados were having a laugh at the
Imps expense. Time to put it right thought Murphy.
In came Paul Smith from Port Vale for a non-League
record fee of £48,000 and the experienced Clive Evans from
Stockport County and slowly, but surely, results took a turn for the better.
With each side they came up against, City were
constantly forced to scrap for the points, literally on a number of
occasions particularly when a brawling Barnet outfit arrived at the
Bank and later on in the season Wealdstone rolled up their sleeves
and tried to mix it with the big boys.
Crowds were on the up - the non-League attendance record
being smashed as 7,542 watched the Imps demolish county neighbours
Boston United 5-1 - and when Citys 2-1 win over Stafford
Rangers in their penultimate game was combined with Barnets 2-1
reverse at home to Runcorn it left the Imps needing a win over
Wycombe Wanderers at Sincil Bank on the afternoon of Monday 2nd May
1988 to reclaim their League status.
Another record attendance - officially announced as
9,432 - looked on as goals in either half from substitute Mark
Sertori and top scorer Phil Brown led to scenes of both jubilation
and relief on the pitch and in the stands at the final whistle.
Murphys Mission had been accomplished and the Imps
This DVD features selected goal highlights from the
season together with the full 90 minutes of that final game against
Wycombe Wanderers at Sincil Bank. The coverage was taken from the
official VHS tape that was released at the end of that season.
You can purchase your copy here for just £5.95
(including P&P) using PayPal's secure online payment system.
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