Dublin University Association Football Club (DUAFC) added to their solo victory in this year’s Leinster Senior Sunday Division 1B in a comprehensive 5-0 win over Sheriff YC at College Park on a fine Sunday morning just past.
DUAFC made their first half domination count, scoring four goals prior to the 45-minute mark. After a first half brace, another goal from no.10 Dan Madaghijan with around 20 minutes to go meant that any comeback from their North Dublin counterparts would have been in vain and the boys in blue walked away with the maximum reward.
Trinity were to start fast as an early headed effort from Dan Madaghijan was saved after an inviting ball was whipped in by full back, Gerard Quaid. The subsequent corner fell to Cian McAllister who’s curling effort forced a good save from the Sheriff goalkeeper.
McAllister was causing the visitors lots of trouble early on as he travelled up the right flank in combination with Quaid. A cross from the winger found striker Jay Walsh, who’s headed shot on goal was pushed wide.
This unrelenting early pressure from DUAFC was to pay off as the resulting corner from Jem Campion found the head of centre back Darragh Timmons. Unmarked at the back post, he threw himself towards the cross, him and ball both ending up over the line followed by applause from the small crowd that had now gathered at College Park.
The goal seemed to set the away side in motion as a quick response from the hoops saw their winger taken down in the box by TCD left-back James Kelly. This led to an animated penalty appeal from their management team but to no avail.
Major threats to TCDs defence were regularly prevented as midfielder Colm Fitzpatrick made a number of key interceptions early on to break up the visitors’ play. Building off Fitzpatrick’s work Trinity continued to dominate the ball, growing into the game as they began to find their rhythm.
With most of their play coming down either flank, searching balls were sent into the box by both Campion and McAllister but their crosses struggled to find any of their companions in blue.
This tactic did eventually come to fruition, as midfielder Thomas Hamilton sent an inquisitive ball from the right side into the box. The ball eluded the away team’s defence as Campion rose to meet it from a similar position as his goal-scoring teammate, scoring Trinity’s second as the ball nestled in the back of the net.
DUAFC did not let up as Campion was now to become provider, after beating the Sheriff left back to the ball, he rolled it back to Madaghijan who was standing on the edge of the box.
A dexterous shot across the goal found the bottom left corner, beating the diving keeper and instigating a questionable celebration from the Trinity man.
Sherriff were to produce some attacks of their own, mostly by agency of their sizeable striker, Alan O’Keefe. However, diligent work in defence from Connor Hennessy meant that any shots on target produced by the number nine ended up safely in Dan Grace’s arms.
Diligence was to be a theme from all eleven DUAFC men as striker Walsh tracked back to pressure the opposition midfield, tackling the Sheriff captain. The dispossessed ball fell fortuitously to Campion, and he was to provide Madaghijan yet again.
The man of the moment made no mistake about it, hammering the ball into the goal leaving the Sheriff keeper with no chance. Trinity had their fourth goal of the morning.
Sheriff were to respond with concerted attacks, this time from wide but it was Trinity who were to have the final chance of the half. As Walsh received a long ball at his feet, he looked up and saw the keeper off his line, his adventurous chip from range was to sail over the bar however and signal the end of the half.
Sheriff FC’s management decided to bring on ‘the young fellas’ at half time in a move which saw vast improvement from the side. Their substitutes were to provide an immediate impact as a tasty through ball from replacement Charlie Tarter found full back, Adam Hickey, beyond the Trinity back four but his ensuing cross was to end up in Grace’s possession.
The increase in tenacity from the Fairview Park men was to extend across the pitch with a number of hearty challenges from both teams igniting a fiery start to the second half. This intensity only enhanced the fixture, with referee Colin Duffy allowing the game to flow freely, disapprovingly waving on some of the theatrics on display. Players from both teams were left to rue good chances as Walsh and hoops replacement Leo Ormond both placed shots wide with only the keeper to beat.
McAllister’s trouble-making play from the first half followed him into the second with his threat from set-plays evident. With around 20 minutes to go he crossed the ball from a corner taken short, finding Kelly at the back post.
The left back lofted the ball back into the box. His header fell pleasantly in the trajectory of Madaghijan who cushioned the ball past the keeper to clinch an impressive hat-trick of goals.
The potent performance of Madaghijan had clearly got to some of the Sheriff players, one of whom floored the Trinity midfielder as he carried the ball toward goal. As the Sheriff goalkeeper arranged his defenders for the opposition’s free kick, McAllister saw his target was left bare, hitting a quick shot that was ultimately poor and sent flying wide of the post.
This shot was to be the final act of note as Trinity substitutes Niall Doolan and Erik Jerkland provided fresh legs with 10 to go, helping to see out this imposing victory.
A quintuple of goals and a clean sheet has seen DUAFC rise to seventh place in the table and will give Trinity confidence for the rest of the league campaign as they look to lay the foundations for a promotion-winning campaign. The next fixture on the list is a trip to St. Catherine’s Park at 11am this Sunday against Rush Athletic FC.