Improving Galway host Offaly at Pearse Stadium

Shane Walsh impressed for Galway against Cork at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday.

Shane Walsh impressed for Galway against Cork at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday.

Galway host Offaly in Division Two of the Allianz Football League this Sunday at Pearse Stadium (2pm ).

This will be a vital fixture for Galway as they aim to keep up with the pacesetters Roscommon and Derry.

Padraic Joyce’s team made it three league wins in a row following a high scoring victory over Keith Ricken’s Cork at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday evening, 3-22 to 2-16.

Conditions were perfect for football in one of the finest facilities in the country where both sides were able to express themselves in attack. It was a thoroughly enjoyable contest, especially given how weather conditions have hindered the quality of football produced by all sides in the league campaign to date.

An explosive first half saw both teams score 1-12 as there was barely a wide kicked in the opening 35 minutes of the contest. Galway grabbed the first score as Paul Conroy palmed the ball to Shane Walsh at centre forward.

Walsh then launched the ball into Robert Finnerty who obligingly kicked the game's first point. This early white flag was a sign of things to come as Cork responded with 1-2 of their own in the space of a few minutes. Blake Murphy hit the net for Cork, while the razor sharp Stephen Sherlock notched two points.

Galway then hit back themselves scoring 1-5 without reply, Finnerty, Dylan McHugh, Walsh with a free, Matthew Tierney and Dessie Conneely were the point scorers which sandwiched a Shane Walsh goal from penalty.

Walsh converted after his own searing run through the heart of the Cork defence. The Galway full forward line was really on song in the first half, relishing their first taste of good underfoot conditions and ample space.

Galway were guilty of conceding a few too many scoreable frees which kept Cork in the game at a time where it seemed the Tribesmen had the possibility to take the match out of Cork’s reach. Sherlock was deadly accurate on the placed balls for Cork as he took his tally to 0-06 in the first half alone.

The first phase of the second half went much the same as the majority of the first half with the two teams trading scores. This was before Damien Comer beat his man along the end line and rifled the ball into the top corner.

It was a defining moment of the game from which Joyce’s side never looked back. Shane Walsh quickly followed up with another green flag as he burnt past the Cork defenders and hammered home his second goal of the game. Walsh was the standout player on the day finishing with 2-7.

Despite conceding a late goal, Galway closed out the game comfortably as Padraic Joyce rolled on the substitutes getting valuable minutes into squad players while also getting to rest some players who have had a lot of matches over the last number of weeks.


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