Danny Cowley made a triumphant return to the LNER Arena, guiding current club Portsmouth to a 3-0 Sky Bet League One victory over former club Lincoln.
Cowley gained legendary status at the Imps, winning the National League and League Two titles, as well as the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy, while also reaching the FA Cup quarter-final.
And on his first visit back to his former stomping ground, he saw goals from Marcus Harness, George Hirst and Reeco Hackett-Fairchild give Pompey a fifth successive victory.
It was a subdued start, before Imps goalkeeper Josh Griffiths got down low to tip Ronan Curtis’ effort round a post. Griffiths then had to be alert to keep out Connor Ogilvie’s drive.
Curtis then robbed Conor McGrandles on the halfway line and strode forward only to smash a shot well wide.
Hirst’s rampaging run ended with a fierce effort well saved by Griffiths, before the visitors attacked again in added-on time, where Harness rammed home the opener following a goalmouth scramble.
The second half was seven minutes old when Mahlon Romeo drilled a shot against Griffiths’ right-hand upright.
Chris Maguire came close to levelling just before the hour mark, curling an effort just over, but it was Pompey who doubled their lead after 66 minutes when Curtis was played into the box, where he crossed low for Hirst to prod into the net.
Imps sub Hakeeb Adelakun forced Gavin Bazunu into his first save of the night five minutes later, before Hackett-Fairchild hammered home a late third after his free-kick rebounded off the wall into his path.