Lincoln City 1 Fleetwood Town 3
Fleetwood Town came back from a goal down to secure their sixth away win of the season, and their first in front of the television cameras at Sincil Bank.
Debutant Ryan Jackson scored twice and had a hand in the third, scored by Andy Mangan, as Town defeated managerless Lincoln City to move to second in the Blue Square Bet Premier league.
Kick-off was delayed by 15 minutes as Town experienced heavy traffic en-route.
Micky Mellon fielded his three new loan signings. Crawley duo Glenn Wilson and Charlie Wassmer lined up in defence, and AFC Wimbledon’s Jackson on the right wing.
Unavailable from the side who lost to Newport on Tuesday were injured defenders, Rob Atkinson (broken ankle) and Shaun Beeley (toe), while Gareth Seddon was ruled out through suspension following his sending-off.
Jackson was soon in the action, trying to set up a goal-scoring opportunity after three minutes.
His tussle with Lincoln’s Mitchell Nelson ended with the home defender leaving the field temporarily for treatment to his nose.
A long throw from Wilson set up a chance for Richard Brodie after seven minutes, but the striker’s shot from close range was blocked.
Town held territorial advantage at this stage, but the Imps showed attacking intent of their own after ten minutes, a good cross from the right bundled out for a corner by Jamie McGuire.
Anxious moments followed when Scott Davies, playing in his 50TH match for Town, had to backpedal furiously as a free-kick from near half-way by Alan Power threatened to catch him out.
Wilson and Wassler had settled in well at the back, both prepared to move into the attacking half as Town sought to take the initiative against a side with just two home wins in their return to the Conference.
The enthusiastic Imps fans came to life as both Sam Smith and Power ended incisive runs at the heart of Town’s defence with strong shots, neither on target. Lincoln squandered a good chance to take the lead in the 32nd minute when Gavin McCallum crossed from the left, but Smith failed to make contact as he rushed in.
Town spent time in the final third, but could not convert effort into chances.
A powerful shot from outside the area by McGuire was blocked, but it was Lincoln who broke the deadlock three minutes before half-time.
A teasing cross came over from the left and Josh O’Keefe rose above Junior Brown to head past Davies into the far corner to give the Imps a half time lead.
Smith struck a right foot shot wide of Davies’s post as Lincoln came forward at the start of the second half.
However, Town retaliated in the best way possible and drew level after 53 minutes.
Milligan beat the offside trap with a perfectly-timed pass to release Vardy, whose attempt from a tight angle was partially cleared.
The ball came to Jackson and his strong shot hit the net despite some frantic defending on the line from the Imps.
Town were nearly knocked back on the hour as Wassler turned a cross from MacCallum marginally over the crossbar but there was soon further delight for the 86 Cod Army supporters as their side took the lead after 65 minutes.
Vardy was involved in the build-up, the ball finding Jackson on the right.
The debutant struck the ball into the danger area, where Mangan was on hand to convert his fifth goal of the season.
There was further joy to follow just eight minutes later when Jackson scored a carbon copy of his first goal.
On this occasion, Brodie had set up the chance, forcing Anyon to turn his shot away in Jackson’s direction. With 15 minutes to go, Brodie received his seventh booking of the season for a strong challenge, and was immediately replaced by Sean Clancy.
Vardy, a constant threat with his strong and direct running, had a well-struck shot turned wide by Anyon as Town dominated, opening up the Imps defence at will.
There was a momentary scare seven minutes from time when Davies had to react quickly to deny Smith in front of goal, but Town were not to be denied victory.
Nathan Pond replaced Milligan as the game moved into added time.
Anyon, Nutte, Watts, Hone, Nelson, Power, Nicolau, O’Keefe (Sinclair 64), Christophe (Fuseini 74), McCallum, Smith (Perry 85). Substitutes, Draper, Sinclair, Fuseini, Taylor, Perry
Davies, McNulty, Brown, Wilson, Wassmer, Jackson, Milligan (Pond 90), McGuire, Brodie yellow card (Clancy 77), Mangan, Vardy. Substitutes: St Louis-Hamilton, Goodall, Pond, Clancy, Brown