Danny Cowley Lincoln City EFL League Two Exclusive

Lincoln City manager Danny Cowley believes competition for places is key, as the club announced another two signings this week.

The Imps increased that competition, securing the services of Jordan Roberts and Mark O’Hara in the space of 24 hours. With both joining on loan until the end of the season, hoping to successfully guide the club into League One.

Cowley on new signings

Lincoln unveiled their fourth signing of the window, Jordan Roberts on Wednesday evening. The winger, who can also play upfront, arrived from Championship strugglers Ipswich, having played 12 games this season.

The fifth January signing was then announced on Thursday, as midfielder Mark O’Hara joined from League One Peterborough. The 23-year-old has made 29 appearances for the Posh this season, scoring 4 goals.

And Cowley believes these two new additions will bring strength in depth to the squad. Improving their promotion chances as we move towards the business end of the season.

On bringing in Roberts, Cowley said:

“It’s one that we’ve been trying to do for quite a while. He had a fantastic season last year at Crawley which got him the move. He can play in the number nine role, as well as eleven, which gives us real flexibility.
“He’ll bring us power and physicality, he’s a direct player with a lovely left foot, and a quality set-piece taker. He can be a spearhead with his robustness and energy, so he gives us that option for both positions.”

On the signing of O’Hara, he said:

“We’ve been working on this one for an awfully long time. Mark has got an unbelievable amount of athleticism, brilliant pitch coverage. He’s a goal scoring central midfield player, and we really think he will complement the group we already have here.
“It gives us real competition, which is fantastic. He handles the ball well, he’s a forward-thinking midfield player, and he certainly fits into our style of play.”

With Cowley spoilt for choice in midfield, he admitted he may consider sending Ellis Chapman out on loan. The 18-year-old has made 10 starts this season, but with the signing of O’Hara, his first team action may become limited.

Cowley on Way criticism

It appears to be deja vu for Cowley and his team after the result against Yeovil Town in midweek. Another victory for the Imps, has resulted in another opposition manager taking aiming at them and the way they play.

Cowley’s team came out as comfortable 2-0 winners when they travelled to the struggling Glovers on Tuesday night. And Town manager Darren Way accused Lincoln of ‘bending the rules’ at times, claiming that some tackles were ‘almost theatre’.

But Danny has refrained from being drawn into a war of words. Taking the positives from the criticisms, in that teams hate playing against his side.

On Way’s comments, Cowley said:

“I’m always pleased when opposing managers are moaning about us because it means that we’ve won. So I’m not going to get too worried about that.
“I think he’s alluding to the Harry Toffolo challenge in the last five minutes, and it was a mistimed challenge. But you won’t meet a nicer boy that Harry Toffolo in football, and he certainly didn’t mean to do what he did.
“He probably should’ve gone with his head, he didn’t, he went with his foot and caught their player. It was an unfortunate incident. They thought it should’ve been a red, which I can understand, but we certainly didn’t mean to do it.
“I’m not interested in getting in wars over words. People will have their judgements on us, we are clear on our style and the way we try to play. We’ll play hard, but we’ll always try to play fair.”

Cowley on Bury

This Saturday sees Lincoln travel to second-placed Bury in a televised match. And the late kick-off will no doubt be one of the toughest tests of the season so far.

The Shakers go into the game with the best home form in the league. Having won 10, drawn 3 and lost 1 of their 14 games at Gigg Lane. Bury have also scored a whopping 35 goals on their own turf, which is also the best in League Two.

However Lincoln carry their own threat, boasting the league’s best away record, with 8 wins, 3 draws and 3 defeats. And Cowley believes it will be a tight game, against opponents who will almost certainly cause his side some problems.

On Saturday’s opponents, he said:

“They’re very very good at home, averaging two and a half goals a game, which is an unbelievable return. They carry a real threat, with four very good forwards at the club, and a terrific midfield three.
“Whenever you see these League One clubs who, when they get relegated, keep the group together and add to it. You know they’re going to be in and around it, and anyone that finishes above Bury this season will have had a really successful year.”

On Scott Wharton’s move to Bury, Cowley said:

“We were aware at some point in December that that was going to happen. He’s just been really unlucky, with Jason Shackell whose been unbelievably consistent. Scott understood the situation, but it’s important in his career for him to play regularly.”