An 88th minute strike from Kyle Casciaro broke Gibraltar United hearts as Lincoln Red Imps nicked a 1-0 win.
The Imps were clear pre-match favourites against their opponents who sit seventh in the table after the defeat, but Manuel Nunez Sanchez’s men showed great spirit and were close to stealing a fantastic point at the Victoria Stadium.
Goalkeeper Kyle Goldwin produced a string of excellent saves while defenders Brad Power, Erin Barnett and Jason Pusey were also superb at the back.
But Gibraltar United were undone in the dying minutes as Kyle Casciaro picked up a loose ball in the box and fired it into the back of the net. There was nothing the helpless Goldwin could do as despite a valiant effort, Gibraltar United once more came away with nothing.
Lincoln had plenty of momentum going into the game after three straight wins in the league and marching into the semi-finals of the Gibtelecom Rock Cup.
Joseph Chipolina, Kenneth Chipolina & George Cabrera all missed out which meant Ryan Casciaro & ‘Dieguito’ Martinez started the game. Imps started brightly, with Martinez’s cross finding Antonio Calderon who headed just wide. Shortly after Lincoln were forced to make a substitution as Federico Tobler replaced Ryan Casciaro who looked to have picked up a knock, worrying news for Jeff Wood ahead of the WCQ against Bosnia next Saturday.
Just before the half-time whistle, Anthony Hernandez was fouled by Kyle Casciaro which resulted in a free-kick being awarded. Gibraltar United felt Kyle, already on a yellow, should have been sent off and were furious with Tim Reoch’s decision to only give the Gibraltarian international a talking too.
Twenty minutes of the game remaining and Lincoln drawing 0-0, their captain Roy Chipolina found himself partnering Lee Casciaro upfront as the Imps searched for a winner, knowing a draw wasn’t good enough seeing as their rivals Europa play bottom of the league Europa Point on Sunday night.
Anthony Hernandez was a constant threat going forward with his pace and trickery causing the Lincoln defence problems, his dribble from the halfway line nearly resulted in a goal for Gibraltar United but his shot from close was well saved by Raul Navas. At the other end, Kyle Casciaro’s long range free-kick was well kept out by Kyle Goldwin.
The Lincoln fans were starting to get restless as the full-time whistle approached, with Gibraltar United continuing to frustrate them. However, the Gib Utd keeper was finally beaten with just two minutes left when Kyle Casciaro close range shot went in and Lincoln took all three points.
Photo by C Correa Photography.