On Sunday 13th March, we lined up for our second game of the 2022 AFL Senior Men's League against Docs United. We went into this game at the Raymond E. Guishard Technical Centre full of confidence following our opening day win against Spartans but we will also under no illusions that this would be anything but a very tough game!
The opening ten minutes of the game were quite tight with both teams enjoying prolonged periods of possession. It would be Docs who would have the first early attempts at goal, both long range shots which were easily saved by our young goalkeeper, Darian Carty. On 15 minutes, Miguel Abraham for Docs went very close to opening the scoring but his shot from 25 yards out whistled just over the bar.
Uprising's first real attack on the Docs goal came in the 18th minute when we were awarded a free kick wide on the right flank. Rene Thomas delivered a dangerous in swinging cross but the ball was cleared from danger by the Docs defence. Almost immediately, Docs went up the other end and were awarded a free kick of their own in a dangerous looking position just outside the Uprising penalty area. Sylvanus James took the free kick but we were relieved to see his shot go just over the bar.
Although Docs were creating the majority of the chances, they did not create anything clear cut as our defence, marshalled by the excellent Matthew Brown thwarted any would be goal scoring chances. Brown was absolutely superb during the whole game and with his vast experience at this level, he really did lead by example.
Just before the half hour mark, Docs again tried a long range shot which failed to hit the target. We were now starting to look increasingly dangerous on the break and our lone striker, Deon Burton was an excellent outlet with his pace causing the Docs defence all sorts of problems. One of those aforementioned breaks ended with us winning a free kick on 34 minutes approximately 30 yards from goal. Rene Thomas stepped up and was unfortunate to see his left foot shot go narrowly wide of the target.
The last real action of a tight opening 45 minutes came on 38 minutes when we created a chance for Yariel Fleming to cross into the Docs penalty area, Yariel delivered a dangerous looking cross but it was cleared by our opponents.
Half Time Score: 0-0
It would be Docs who would create the first chance of the second period when on 47 minutes they shot at goal but their attempt was well saved by Darian Carty. Docs were definitely on the front foot at this point but Matthew Brown picked up where he had left off in the first half by producing a number of fine tackles and clearances.
On 53 minutes, Docs again tried their luck from distance but their powerful shot was well tipped over the bar by Darian Carty. Just three minutes later, our opponents were awarded an indirect free kick right on the edge of penalty area but thankfully it all came to nothing when Docs fired the ball over the bar.
Uprising were working extremely hard off the ball by closing the Docs players down when they were in possession of the ball. Due to our excellent work rate it was no surprise that some of the players looked to be tiring and because of this we made a couple of substitutions around the hour mark to freshen things up a bit. One of those substitutions, Denny Derrick was involved in an excellent passing move by the boys which ended up with him being fouled on the edge of the Docs penalty area. Tre Gumbs took the resultant free kick but his powerful shot came back off the Docs defensive wall.
On 81 minutes Darian Carty produced one of the saves of the season so far when he somehow managed to turn a deflected shot around the post, a really excellent save by our promising young goalkeeper. Alas, the corner kick that was awarded to Docs following Darian's exploits was floated into the box and headed home by Andros Bowens from close range to give Docs the lead.
After falling a goal behind we held our head up high and searched for an equalizer which unfortunately did not come our way and it was Docs United who took all three points from a very close encounter.
Despite succumbing to our first defeat of the season, there were still plenty of positives to take from the game as we now look ahead to our next fixture against the reigning champions of Anguilla - Roaring Lions FC.
Final Score: Uprising FC 0-1 Docs United
Uprising Line Up
30.Darian Carty, 28.Rachad Thomas ( 61 min / 25.Kymani Hodge ), 3.Asharn Hodge, 29.Alexander Nathaniel ( 83 min / 5.Adrian Carty ), 2.Yariel Fleming ( 64 min / 6.Denny Derrick ), 4.Stephan Fiedtkou ( 72 min / 11.Antoine Laurent ), 7.Javis Jones, 10.Rene Thomas ( c ) ( 79 min / 12.Keonandrew Alexander ) , 13.Tre Gumbs, 17.Matthew Brown, 26.Deon Burton
15.Nathaniel Gumbs, 16.Shakeem Lewis, 22.Joden Lewis