Lincoln City manager Michael Appleton has revealed his aspirations for his side this year and how he plans to use the January transfer window to reach them.

Lincoln City were tipped to be pushing for promotion again this season after a play-off final defeat to Blackpool last year saw them condemned to another year in the third tier. However, Appleton remains certain his targets for the season haven’t changed despite the lacklustre start.

Speaking to Lincolnshire Live, Appleton said:

“Two is the minimum, probably three.

“If we want to compete in the top half of the table, we need a minimum of two.”

It’s hard to argue with what the former Leicester City caretaker boss is saying, his side sit 17th, four points closer to the drop zone than the top six.

Appleton clearly feels the need to add more quality competition to his ranks. Their 27-year-old striker Tom Hopper who contributed directly towards 12 goals last season in League One is yet to register a single goal or assist and is now out until Christmas with a stress fracture.

Elsewhere, Southampton loanee Dan N’Lundulu is also suffering a similar fate and they are relying heavily on winger Anthony Scully to provide the goods.

Appleton wasn’t afraid to say it straight as he warned:

“If not, we’ll be fighting in and around where we are at this moment in time.”

The 45-year-old boss is experienced enough to know that without an improvement his position in the Lincoln hot seat will soon become heavily scrutinised.

Appleton won’t be the only one hoping the board hear his plea, the Imps fans will also be eager for the owners to show their desire to improve in January.

Lincoln made some attacking additions in the summer but it seems they are yet to click – versatile attacker Chris Maguire was one of those new additions, but after spending most of last season sidelined and out of favour at Sunderland it seems he is struggling to find consistent fitness and form.