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Callaghan’s comeback rights an old wrong

It may have taken 44 years to right a terrible wrong, but when former Galway Rovers player/manager Tommy Callaghan returned to the city for the first time since his sacking in 1979, it was like he’d never been away.

A half-time introduction on the pitch during Galway United’s 6-0 trouncing of Athlone Town was the culmination of a few days that saw him hook up with almost all of his former squad from what was only Galway’s second season in senior football.

The man who won six league titles with Glasgow Celtic, as well as three Scottish Cups and two League Cups, hadn’t set foot in Galway since he was summarily dismissed via a letter posted through the letterbox of his home.

But he admitted that, in many ways, a great weight had been lifted from him with the massive reception he received everywhere he went in the city over a packed few days.

He also took time out to drop in on Brendan Lynas, a Scotsman long domiciled in Galway. Brendan played with Ross County and Inverness Caledonian Thistle, but met his wife Marion Mulholland on a visit to Galway – and never left.

Tommy also took part in a Questions and Answers session in the Claddagh Hall where he spoke of the hurt he felt at the manner of his departure – but he also spoke of his distinguished career in the green and white hoops after the great Jock Stein paid a record price for the elegant midfielder.

Photo: Tommy Callaghan poses with his old team from his season in charge at Galway Rovers (from left) George Quinlivan, Tom Lally, Gerry Daly, Tommy Callaghan, Tommy Murphy, Mick O’Donnell, Des Kennedy (partly hidden), Joe Keating, Tony Collins, Kieran Sciascia and Tony Murphy.

See full coverage and loads of photos in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or you can download the digital edition from You can also download our Connacht Tribune App from Apple’s App Store or get the Android Version from Google Play.

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