University College Dublin (UCD) proved far too strong for Dublin University Association Football Club (DUAFC) yesterday, dealing out a 7-0 drubbing to Trinity in the sides’ first Colleges and Universities Football League (CUFL) encounter of the year.
Summer seemed to have returned yesterday to the UCD Bowl for DUAFC’s first derby of the year. Straight out of the gates, UCD bombarded the Trinity defence with attacks, skilfully led by striker Jason McCullaud. Although DUAFC made efforts to clear the ball, it was clear that UCD were the stronger team. Thirteen minutes in, a through ball from captain Gary O’Neill sliced through several Trinity players to find UCD’s Conor Davis, who looped the ball past Daniel Grace to make it 1-0.
Trinity managed to get their first chance soon afterwards, with Dylan Connolly’s shot just veering left of the top corner. A minute later the score was 2-0, as Davis tucked away another goal for the home side.
Trinity’s misfortunes only continued, as Jason Boateng suffered a leg injury after 20 minutes and had to be taken off, his shoes being filled by substitute Ivan McConville. The few chances Trinity managed to create were frequently halted by offside calls.
UCD, on the other hand, were a constant threat to the visitors’ goal. A thunderous strike by O’Neill ricocheted off the post in the 35th minute, and five minutes later only Killian Doyle’s bravery came between UCD and the net, as he stuck his head in the way of another O’Neill effort.
Just as it appeared that Trinity had managed to prevent any more tragedies before the half-time whistle, a dangerous effort from McCullaud was spilt by Grace, permitting the UCD striker to tap the ball into the net to make it 3-0. A minute later, just before the break, an inattentive Trinity defence allowed Daire O’Connor to walk the ball into the net.
As they re-emerged onto the pitch for the second half, Trinity seemed irritated but not yet willing to give up. For the next half hour, Trinity threatened the UCD goal with attack after attack but were unable to convert any of the chances they had created. This frustration led to some questionable attempts at goal, such as a powerful but uncontrolled shot by Evan McCroxy which sailed several metres over the bar.
In the 75th minute, a pass made its way to UCD’s Yoyo Mahdy, who tucked away another for the home side. In its dying embers, the game still had some more disasters in store for an exhausted DUAFC, as two goals by Evan Farrell and Sean McDonald finished the game off at 7-0.
The gulf in quality between intercollegiate football and the Leinster League opposition to which DUAFC are accustomed was painfully apparent yesterday. The Premier Division North of the CUFL is a huge step up from the Leinster League, and DUAFC will have to adapt fast to the opposition they will face at this level. Next up in the Premier Division North, Trinity take on Maynooth on October 16th in College Park.