Disappointed with last Friday's unfortunate defeat to Shelbourne, Galway FC will be keen to summon a positive response tomorrow when visiting Ferrycarrig Park for a crucial SSE Airtricity League first division encounter with Wexford Youths.
Galway, who currently occupy a promotion play/off position in third place, are two points ahead of Wexford. Ultimately it means that the long trip to the south east will be a hugely significant fixture for both teams eager to trim the gap on the top two, Longford Town and Shelbourne.
At Eamonn Deacy Park last weekend, Shelbourne were resilient as Galway squandered a string of chances before Gareth Coughlan pounced for the decisive goal.
Galway boss Tommy Dunne felt his side were not clinical enough.
“We were disappointed with the result, but I thought we were very good in the first half,” Dunne said. “We had chances when we got in, but we didn't hit the target. You have got to take your opportunities, especially in a game like this. When you are on top you have to score. We didn't.
“The goal we conceded was one little lapse, but that can be the difference in a match like that. I thought overall we performed very well and we played some really good stuff.”
Despite suffering four home defeats at the Dyke Road venue - two each against Longford and Shels - Dunne took some positives from the latest reversal.
“We are disappointed, but I cannot be too hard and I cannot fault the effort. I know people say these things, but the work rate and the level of the play was excellent. The only thing I'll say possibly against us is that when we go one down we seem to be cavalier trying to get the equaliser. You have to be disciplined, keep your shape, and play as much as you can.
“ We should have beaten Shels the first time here, we could have beaten them if we had taken our chances this time.”
Dunne was encouraged by the solid defensive display of debutant Paddy Barrett, who has the versatility and potential to emerge as a key figure for Galway. “At the back Paddy Barrett had a good debut. I thought Stephen Walsh was solid enough and generally we played reasonably well. We didn't give away too many chances, it is a learning curve for some. It is the intensity we need to get and I just don't think we are at that yet.”
Though now seven points behind Shels Dunne insists Galway's objective of a promotion play/off berth can be attained. Galway, unbeaten in the League away from home, can still finish the regulation season ahead of Shels, he believes.
"We are under no illusions how tough it is going to be between now and the end. Shels are seven points ahead of us, but we still have to play them. Second place isn't gone either. Again we just have to be a bit more clinical, even a bit more ruthless at times.” That is precisely what Galway will need to be in the south east against a rugged Wexford outfit.
• Galway United Supporters’ Trust will be running a bus to Friday evening’s match at Ferrycarraig Park, leaving The Dail Bar, Cross Street, Galway, at 3pm. Contact Ronan Coleman 087-6972823 or Dominick Walsh 087-9163438.