On Saturday the Carrick United Under 16 team did the club and town proud with a determined, skilful and powerful display against one of the SFAI cup favourites, Belvedere. This superb Carrick team were within three minutes of causing a huge upset, when 2-1 up and it would have been well deserved. However, Belvedere equalised with minutes to spare, with the momentum now firmly them they went on to score a scarcely deserved winner in extra time, to win 3-2.
Carrick went in one down at half time. Belvedere scored after 20 mins following some hesitation in the Carrick defence. Ben made an outstanding save to keep it at one but Carrick were unlucky not to score themselves. The visitors keeper made a brilliant save from Brendan when he broke through and we were unfortunate not to score from some superb frees and corners from Conor.
The power and strength of Fitzy and skill and guile of Brendan up front caused problems for the Belvedere defence the whole match.
For almost all of the 80 minutes the Carrick defenders were on top. Really well organised by Aidan, Sean and Danny at full back did not give an inch while Alex was powerful in the air and in the tackle.
Shane D gave a disciplined and strong performance in midfield while Eric was full of running and skill.
On the flanks, Joe did not put a foot wrong and Belvedere created little down that side as a result. Mark joined the fray in the second half and caused problems with his pace. Luke also came on and this player has plenty of potential for the future. Conor on the other flank, and later in the middle showed his class throughout especially from the dead ball. Indeed Conor put us ahead late in the second half with an unstoppable header after a brilliant run and cross from Fitzy.
Before that Aidan had put us level after a period of sustained Carrick pressure, finishing superbly to the net after a scramble at a corner.
In the end it was not to be. But this excellent performance showed what this team is capable of and the future is bright!