Crucial two points at stake for footballers in Longford

Galway's Eoin Concannon is held by Westmeath's Maek McCallon in action from the Allianz National Football league game at Tuam Stadiu on Sunday. 				Photo:-Mike Shaughnessy

Galway's Eoin Concannon is held by Westmeath's Maek McCallon in action from the Allianz National Football league game at Tuam Stadiu on Sunday. Photo:-Mike Shaughnessy

The Galway footballers head to Pearse Park in Longford this Sunday (2pm ) for a critical game against the home side who are under the management of former Kildare star Glen Ryan. It is his fifth year in charge of Longford.

A good result on Sunday is essential for Galway if they want to be at the winning end of division two this season.

Longford have no points to date, while Galway have three, and defeat this weekend would see Longford facing a rapid return to division three.

It is a real "four-pointer" as regards which teams will be in the relegation quagmire, but for Galway, a win would give them some badly-needed momentum for their trip to Laois on Saturday week (March 16 ).

Longford have been beaten by Wexford, Westmeath and Armagh in this season’s league, and, based on those results, Galway manager Alan Mulholland and his panel of players will be hopeful of producing a good performance and achieving the necessary win.

However they will need to play for the full 70 minutes and keep their focus and intensity for both halves of the game which is something they have failed to do in their three games in the league thus far.

Last Sunday was a perfect case in point. Against Westmeath, they led by 0-8 to 0-2 at half time and were in the driving seat. However, 20 minutes later they found themselves behind by 1-9 to 0-10.

The way they allowed Westmeath to dominate the third quarter and rattle off five points in succession was not good enough and there needs to be more leadership shown on the field to stop that happening.

When a team gets a run like that, a few lads need to stand up and turn the tide - win a kick-out or two at midfield, pick up a few breaks, put in a few hits, or slow the game down a bit to take the steam out of the game. The opposition’s flow of possession must be stopped.

Despite the high levels of despondency among the home fans after the stalemate in Tuam last Sunday - which was compounded by Mayo's very impressive showing in Croke Park against Dublin on Saturday (with one eye on the championship meeting in May ), there were a few reasons to have a small modicum of positivity.

Yes, there were plenty of negatives too, but there is not much to be achieved from thrashing those out here with four league games coming down the tracks.

 

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