This really is it. The time for deliverance has truly arrived as Galway United’s premier league revival must commence at Terryland Park tomorrow evening when Shamrock Rovers come to Terryland Park. Avoiding defeat is necessary, but deep down Galway know a victory is required.
Though Rovers’ recent record against Galway is littered with positive results, the locals’ need is greater. Emboldened by Tuesday's smashing Carlisle Grounds FAI Cup success over Bray Wanderers, United's belief is increasing again.
Manager Jeff Kenna cut a satisfied figure following that triumph. "I was very pleased. I thought we played as well as we did in the first half on Friday for the whole game. Obviously when we went two nil up they had to take a few more chances.
"The two goals were excellent and I thought that we could have scored another couple at least. In the second half when we went two up they had to take a few chances which suited us. The manner of the performance and the attitude is what I am most pleased about."
Galway's appetite in the battle was exemplary and the match was peppered with clever individual displays. Gary Rogers' handling was assured, Seamus Conneely at right full used the ball intelligently, John Lester's midfield combativeness disturbed Bray, while John Russell and Jay O'Shea offered the imaginative touches further up the field.
The cruel Cobh Ramblers reversal is being cleansed from the system. "Workrate is something we have got to have. It was something that was missing in the Cobh game, but we have done a lot of soul searching since and the performances have been particularly good on the workrate and attitude front."
Suddenly United are blessed with options. On Tuesday Derek Glynn, Levi Tierney, and Vinny Faherty all contributed upon their introductions. Alan Murphy and Iarlaith Daveron will both be back in contention after being Cup tied ensuring Kenna has the rare pleasure of having tricky selection choices to make. "It is fantastic. It is the first time since I've been here, but that is what I want. The more decisions I have to make the better. I look forward to that.
"Obviously any winning is pleasing and is good for confidence. It is good for the club that we have moved into the semi-finals. It is a major achievement for the club, but we have to transform that now into our league form. It is a big game on Friday, but I'd like to think that the players will be up for it having played so well."
Recapturing the verve that was shown in Bray will be tough, but Galway need to embrace the task. Rovers have thumped United twice already in 2008 and Kenna will be anxious to outfox his distant cousin Pat Scully, who will patrol the opposite technical area. When in the groove Rovers are an adept outfit, but Galway's high motivation levels shouldn't be discounted.