Galway’s destiny in own hands as they head to Newry for difficult assignment

Football League tie at Tuam Stadium. Photo: Enda Noone.
Football League tie at Tuam Stadium. Photo: Enda Noone.

GALWAY might have mixed the good with the bad so far in their Division 2 National Football League campaign, but with the longer days almost upon us, the reality is that Kevin Walsh’s charges are in charge of their own promotion destiny.

This Sunday’s trip to Esler Park in Newry (3pm) will take on something of a championship hue, given that Galway are within touching distance of Division 1 while Down – on four points – are on the very edge of the drop zone.

Galway’s eventual big win against Derry in Tuam last Sunday – despite the defensive frailty in evidence – was still a critical result, keeping them (on 7 pts.) just one behind league leaders Kildare and two ahead of both Meath and Clare.

Kildare with a home match against Clare on Sunday will fancy their chances of securing one of the two promotion places on offer by Sunday evening while Galway will need to get a win or a draw at least from Newry.

Meath’s one point victory over Galway in Navan is also a worry for anyone looking closely at points permutations – if both of those sides end up on the same total at the end of the league, the head-to-head would ‘swing it’ for the Leinster side.

If, however, a third team joined Galway and Meath in second place, then points difference would be the deciding factor, and here the Tribesmen hold the edge on +22 as compared to Meath on +4 and Clare on +1.

All of those scenarios will be far removed from the minds of the Galway squad and management when they trot out at Páirc Esler on Sunday – what they will be hoping for is a tighter and more consistent performance than they gave at Tuam on Sunday against Derry.

Galway in full attacking flow against Derry, were quite an impressive sight – moving the ball quickly and accurately, in the process creating an avalanche of chances.

In the end, they put 5-15 on the scoreboard, and it could easily have been 8-18, but they won’t need any reminding that the concession of 2-10 in the first half was a pretty damning statistic in terms of defensive resistance.

For Sunday, Declan Kyne will be back available for selection – a long standing engagement had ruled him out of the Derry match – but it will be a few weeks before Annaghdown’s powerhouse attacker, Damien Comer will be back in action.

Comer broke a bone in his foot in training but he is recovering well although it will be another couple of weeks at least before he returns to competitive action.

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