A fourth straight win over St Patrick’s Athletic is an encouraging sign for Galway United as they enter tomorrow’s Terryland Park clash with Dundalk.
Galway’s spirited comeback in Inchciore provided evidence of their ability, and Sean Kelly’s return to the midfield certainly aided the cause. Unfortunately Galway will be without several regulars for the Dundalk game as Shane Guthrie, Michael McGrath, and Jay O’Shea are all suspended.
There is a possibility that Derek O’Brien may return to the squad, and manager Ian Foster insists Galway will strain every sinew to claim another positive result.
“We’ll keep going. We’ve got O’Shea, Guthrie, and McGrath missing so that’s not going to be easy, but what it does do is give someone else the opportunity to come in and impress.
“Derek’s got a hamstring strain, it’s just nagging him really. It’s not a tear as such, but every time he accelerates and sprints it’s just nagging him, so we’ve just got to monitor that one and if Derek is fit he plays.”
Troubled by injuries during the second series of fixtures, Galway were solid at Richmond Park, and Kelly capped a determined display with a delightful 30 yard strike.
“I said to Sean just give me everything you’ve got and when you’ve done enough give us a shout and he did, we took him off. He’s a big part of our team. He breaks things open, he organises people, he stops balls inside the front men, and when we have got possession he’s a pivotal part of the team.”
Foster was thrilled by the gritty manner in which Galway eked out the victory on the banks of the Camac, and is hoping for a similar level of enthusiasm when Dundalk hit the west.
“We’ve got an opportunity to get another three points at home. It won’t be easy with the players we have missing, but if we play like we did second half, we give ourselves a good chance.
“I’m pleased with certain aspects of our season, there’s other aspects I’m disappointed with in games where I thought we could have picked up points where we didn’t, but I’m going to get things wrong. I’m a young manager and I’ve got young players and we’re going to get things wrong.
“We did have a lot of injuries and suspensions during the second round of games, but I’m sure everybody else did, it’s not an excuse. You’ve got a squad and you’ve got to use it. It’s not 11 players that keep you in the division, it’s 21, maybe 22. At the moment we’re in seventh place and we’re in seventh place on merit and if we’re in seventh place at the end of the season I’ll be delighted.”
•Galway United Supporters Trust will be holding a a programme sale at the Millwall friendly on Sunday. Old United, League of Ireland, international, and British programmes will be on sale. GUST will be running a bus to the premier division match in Bray on Friday, July 24, departing Fibber Magees, Eyre Square, at 3pm. To book a seat contact Ronan 087-6972823.
Having leaked 16 goals in three matches, Mervue United will be seeking a vast improvement at Flancare Park on Saturday.
Heavy losses to Shelbourne, Monaghan United, and Kildare County, who ended a run of 17 defeats in a row in all competitions at Terryland Park, ensure Johnny Glynn’s side will be anxious to take something from their trip to the midlands.
Glynn has been forced to play without a raft of experienced players over the past two months in particular, and with Mervue encountering their first period of real difficulty they must remain calm and composed. Nicky Curran, Damien O’Rourke, Mike Tierney, and Mixie Harty will be asked to supply assistance for youngsters like Mark Ludden, Kevin Barrett, and Pat Hoban as Mervue strive to overturn Longford for the second time this year.