Three positives for Galway

1. Forwards were very efficient.

Shane Walsh is a talented youngster. When he is in possession, he is very hard to tackle. Defenders back off him and things happen. He has speed and skill and two good feet. He hit 0-6 (3fs ) last Saturday and he has notched 0-24 in the four championship games to date.

A negative is that he still gives the ball away sometimes and, against Kildare in the last quarter, he coughed up possession needlessly at least twice when Galway needed him to keep a cool head. If he can improve on that aspect of his game, he will be a real gem.

Ian Burke is a very good young player too. The former St Jarlath's captain uses possession well and he has very good hands and vision. Seán Moran also had a really good game and powered down the middle and also hit 1-1. Cortoon's Adrian Varley did some very good things too and he was involved in a good few of Galway's scores.

Alan Mulholland must be looking in at some of those guys and wondering if they are worth a run out against Mayo at senior level in Pearse Stadium in a few weeks’ time.

2 - Flynn and Ó' Curraoin back in tandem

When Galway won the All-Ireland u-21 title in 2011, Tom Flynn and this year's captain Fiontán Ó Curraoin were the midfield partnership that powered the team to glory. Thankfully they are back in harness.

The Athenry man had been out for nine months after knee surgery, but he is now ready for 60 or 70 minutes of championship action. It was great to see the two players linking so well around the midfield area in O'Connor Park.

Flynn looked in good shape, even if he understandably waned a bit in the last quarter. He took his goal well and should improve as his fitness gets back to top intercounty standard.

Damien Comer also did some very fine work at wing-forward and his covering of Paul Cribben was impressive. Comer also kicked one very fine point and his improvement over the past few months have been really impressive. Hopefully there is more to come.

3 - May provide an impetus to the senior squad

Mayo will come to Pearse Stadium on May 19 in the Connacht championship as hot favourites. And rightly so.

They were in last year's All-Ireland final and will be going for a third provincial title this year. They competed well in division one this year and have been a better team than Galway over the past few years.

Nevertheless, by the time of that game, Alan Flynn's u-21 squad will have played Cork in the All-Ireland final. Hopefully, they can go on and finish out their championship in style. There is a batch of youngsters involved in that squad who would not look out of place on the senior panel and some of them could even push for starting places against James Horan's side.

Hopefully some of their vigour of youth and "can do" attitude can infuse the senior panel with self-belief to go out and have a "real cut" off Mayo.

 

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