Battling Lynn go down - but not without a fight

Gold Omotayo puts King's Lynn Town ahead against Notts County

Gold Omotayo puts the Linnets ahead against Notts County - Credit: Ian Burt

King’s Lynn Town were on the receiving end of a ‘game of two halves’ at The Walks. 

Having bossed the first half against the non-league giants, Lynn’s defensive frailties were undone by Callum Roberts, who scored a hat-trick in 15 second-half minutes to turn the game completely on its head. 

Lynn boss Tommy Widdrington will take some consolation from his team’s first-half performance and their refusal to give the game up but, ultimately, it was a lost opportunity for a big scalp and, more importantly, something towards the relegation fund. 

Lynn will point to referee Robert Whitton who turned down loud penalty appeals - 30 seconds before County score to take the lead. 

The hosts started on the front foot and it was a superb move which saw them take the lead in the ninth minute. Ross Barrows pinged a diagonal pass out to Aaron Jones on the right. Jones’ control was spot on, as was Michael Clunan’s overlap which teed up a cross to the back post where Gold Omotayo climbed to head home - his first league goal in his 18th start. 

Aaron Jones and Ross Barrows celebrate their part in Gold Omotayo's goal for King's Lynn

Aaron Jones and Ross Barrows celebrate their part in Gold Omotayo's goal - Credit: Ian Burt

Frank Vincent stung keeper Paul Jones’s fingers with a shot on 27 minutes, but it was bread and butter stuff for the home keeper. 

Lynn were happy to use the diagonal ball to Jones or Clunan down the right, to create openings, and were content to stifle when the visitors were in possession, waiting for their chance to snap into a challenge to win back the ball.  

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Josh Barrett led a four-on-four break but had to settle for a corner, as Lynn turned up the pressure - the crowd responding by turning up the decibels. 

Pierce Bird protected his goalkeeper well, getting his head in the way of a Vincent curler from the edge of the area – Omotayo doing fine defensive work at the subsequent corner. 

County began to press for a leveller by the break, but they wanted too many touches on the edge of the area and Lynn were good value for their half-time advantage – it was the first time for a while the hosts had been applauded off at the break. 

County needed to up their game - and they did. Vincent weaved his way into the area but was brilliantly denied by Paul Jones, but the Lynn keeper could do nothing when Callum Roberts fired in a left-footer from just inside the area to level matters. 

King's Lynn boss Tommy Widdrington

Tommy Widdrington on the touchline - Credit: Ian Burt

Ruben Rodrigues should have done better six yards from goal, but Bird put him off and Jones grabbed the ball. 

Lynn were furious when a penalty claim for a foul on Olly Scott by former Norwich City man Richard Brindley went unpunished – and even more furious a minute later when Roberts was celebrating after sweeping County into the lead. 

Tommy Widdrington made his first change, striker Malachi Linton replacing central defender Dan Bowry. 

But on 67 minutes Roberts completed his hat-trick, sweeping in a low cross from the left to put County firmly in the driving seat. 

From being a major test Lynn’s resolve, it was now more about damage limitation. 

Rodrigues forced a good stop out of Jones while at the other end Clunan headed a Jones cross from the right just wide. 

But Vincent made it 4-1 on 77 minutes to end any hopes Lynn had of retrieving something from the game disappeared. 

Clunan did give Lynn some hope with a magnificent free-kick from 25 yards which went in off the underside of the bar, but it was too little, too late. 

King’s Lynn: P Jones, A Jones, Bowry (Linton 60), Barrows, Bird, Scott, Coleman, Widdrington (Charles 83), Barrett (Kurran-Browne 74), Clunan, Omotayo. Subs not used: Sundire, McGavin. 

Notts County: Slocombe, Chicksen, Lacey, Brindley, Roberts (Sam 83), Richardson, Francis (Brunt 46), Palmer, Vincent, Rodrigues (Mitchell 78), Wootton. Subs not used: Rawlinson, Nemane. 

Referee: Robert Whitton 

Att: 1,505 

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