Burke and Canning remain sidelined for Galway

Galway's Conor Whelan receives treatment during the game against Offaly last Sunday. Photo: Enda Noone.
Galway's Conor Whelan receives treatment during the game against Offaly last Sunday. Photo: Enda Noone.

Joseph Cooney is a major injury concern for All-Ireland champions Galway as they travel to face Dublin at Parnell Park in what is sure to be an interesting National League fixture this Sunday (2pm).

Registering 2-1, Cooney sustained a serious shin injury in the Tribesmen’s 2-19 to 0-14 win over Offaly at Pearse Stadium last weekend – so maintaining their unbeaten run in Division 1B – and Galway boss Micheal Donoghue describes him as “a big doubt for the weekend”.

While Cooney will be a loss, with every game the reigning National League champions are getting closer and closer to their strongest starting 15, although Donoghue notes captain David Burke and sharpshooter Joe Canning, both of whom are recovering from injury, are still a bit away yet.

“David is probably ahead of Joe but he is still a few weeks away yet. Joe is probably a bit longer. Every week though we are getting better and stronger. The two weeks in the run up to the Offaly game the lads trained really hard so we expected a better performance against them.

“As you said, a bigger challenge awaits going up to face Dublin in Parnell Park. I think every team takes a bit of comfort playing at home and they have a really strong record against all the top teams up there. So, again, this week is a step up but it is a challenge we are looking forward to.”

In all, nine of the Galway team who started last September’s All-Ireland final began against Offaly with Niall Burke, who came off the bench to impress that day, also introduced against the Faithful County last Sunday.

With new players in also pushing for game-time, such as Shane Bannon, Sean Loftus, Shane Cooney, Brian Concannon, Kevin McHugo and Jack Coyne, Donoghue says this has shorn away any risk of complacency that might exist in the squad.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.