0-1: A performance to be proud of
Even though everything went against UD Almeria, they played their hearts out creating some chances against FC Cartagena. Lazo, injured after 12 minutes
If there is a word that could define the home match played by UD Almería against FC Cartagena, that is pride. Everything went against the Rojiblancos, who suffered an unfair defeat (0-1). The numerous absentees in the squad list were replaced by the available troops who plucked up the courage and merited a goal at least. The footballers never gave up and made all the supporters in the Mediterraneo stands feel satisfied as they saw them play their heart out in the first reverse fixture of the season.
It was a difficult task for head coach Rubi to pick out the starting XI given the fact that there were plenty of Covid-19 cases, injuries and bans. The chosen contenders to battle it out were Fernando; Pozo, César de la Hoz, Iván Martos, Centelles, Robertone, Robles, Arnau, Portillo, Appiah and Fernando. In addition, three UD Almeria ‘B’ youngsters were named in the first-team squad list for the first time ever—David Cuenca, Sylla and Gilbert— and joined Raúl Caballero and Fuoli who are used to training with the senior team this campaign.
From the beginning it was clear that UD Almería were going to try everything to win. So much so that, within 9 minutes, Appiah, Lazo and Robertone teamed up to stage a perfect combination and were close to opening the scoring. It was then when UD Almeria were dogged by misfortune since Lazo was forced off the battlefield on a stretcher. It was the 12th minute and the Sanlúcar de Barrameda native felt a strong pain after whipping in a chance. He couldn't carry on so Akieme replaced him.
Despite the adversities, the dominance of the attack continued at the hands of the Rojiblancos, although lacking success in the final pass. The hosts merited to get ahead, but, Gastón Silva put FC Cartagena in front 38 minutes in following a corner-kick. The visitors reached the break leading (0-1).
As a result of the fact that UD Almeria were trailing in the second half, Almeria ‘B’ forward Raúl Caballero came on to boost his side’s attacking options. The Rojiblancos created some goalscoring opportunities during this part, highlighting a direct free-kick taken by Robertone, which came close to the post and a fine attempt by Arnau over the crossbar. UD Almería continued to swelled with fierce pride and ambition. Ramazani replaced injured Puigmal and Carlos Gilbert, the current Almeria ‘B’ top scorer made his debut.
FC Cartagena popped up into Almeria’s box over the second period, however they did not manage to double their lead despite the effort. Caballero found a defender with a shot from inside the area, Gilbert received a dangerous tackle when he was heading towards the goal - causing the sending-off of the rival- and the visitor goalie denied a thumping shot from Ramazani.
UD Almería did everything they could to triumph over adversity and although they did not net in the end, they felt pride in front of the fans who experienced in the Juegos Mediterraneos Stadium the first league meeting of 2022.