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Late Manning penalty secures win for Galway FC

Keith Kelly

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Galway FC manager Tommy Dunne was a relieved man in St Colman’s Park on Saturday night after his side snatched an injury time winner against Cobh Ramblers.

Ryan Manning converted a 96th minute penalty to make it five wins on the bounce for Dunne’s side, and while the manager was delighted to have taken all three points, there was little else by way of celebration when he spoke to Sentinel Sport.

“My head is wrecked. We didn’t play well at all. We score with a great goal, all we have to do is keep a clean sheet and go home, forget about everything else, but some of our decision making regarding balls going forward was poor.

“I think some of these guys need to learn about closing out games. Sometimes it doesn’t have to be pretty, that’s a car park out there, the pitch, it’s desperate, but I said to the lads I think we deserved that bit of luck because over the year, we hadn’t got much,” he said.

While his side have rightly been praised all season for trying to get the ball down and work it up the pitch, some games require more of a route one approach, and Dunne admitted Saturday was one such instance.

“We have drilled ourselves as a football team not to be whacking it up the pitch, but I’m telling the lads tonight to go long, which is completely foreign to them all season. You have to do that as balls are kicking up around your neck – on a normal pitch you tell them to do what we do, but tonight you had to change your tactics in a sense.

“Their goal comes from a set-piece that was caused, not so much by dilly-dallying, but by not putting your boot through the ball when it’s needed, but we take the three points and we move on to the next matches,” he said.

There are two games to go in the regular season, and while Longford Town’s win over Waterford United on Friday night means the title is now beyond Galway FC, they can still not only secure a play-off spot, but the added bonus of having home advantage in the second-leg by overtaking Shelbourne in the table.

Shels lost 3-2 away to Finn Harps on Friday night, and they host Galway FC in Tolka Park this Friday night with a three point cushion over Dunne’s side, but an inferior goal difference of +16 compared to Galway FC’s +24, so Galway FC will overtake them with a win on the northside of Dublin.

While Wexford Youths are technically still in the play-off hunt – until tonight at least, when anything less than a win over Finn Harps will end their hopes – the two sides likely to meet in that two-leg encounter will be Galway FC and Shelbourne.

So in one way, Friday’s game will be the start of the two-leg promotion play-off between the sides, as whichever team wins on Friday night will have a massive psychological boost over the other ahead of the play-offs.

The team that finishes third will be at home on Friday October 17, before travelling to the home of the second-placed team on Friday October 24. The winners of that two-leg play-off will meet the side that finishes 11th in the Premier Division over two legs on Monday October 27 and Friday October 31, with a draw to be made to see who has home advantage in the second leg.

The Galway United Supporters Trust will be running a bus to Friday’s game in Tolka Park. The bus will depart from The Dáil Bar on Middle Street at 4pm and seats can be booked by contacting Ronan Coleman at (087) 6972823 or Dominick Walsh at (087) 9163438.

CITY TRIBUNE

Sporting stars and coaches offer ideas on how to make it

Stephen Glennon

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Carnmore's Paul Kilgannon who interviewed successful coaches and sports stars for his latest book: Be The Best You Can Be In Sport: A Book for Irish Youth.

WITH contributions from 50 sports stars and coaches, Paul Kilgannon’s second book, ‘Be The Best You Can Be In Sport: A Book for Irish Youth’ offers a succinct blueprint for any youth looking to excel in their chosen sport – and, indeed, for those coaching aspiring athletes.

In recent years, Kilgannon’s reputation has grown, particularly since he released his first book, ‘The CARVER Framework’, which focused on the development of the child and young player through a coaching model which the Carnmore native formulated.

While that book was a great success, his latest offering, released just before the Christmas, looks set to surpass it given the amounts of plaudits it has received locally and nationally, with the likes of The Irish Examiner and The Irish Times referencing it among their sports books of 2020.

Then again, one only has to look at those who contributed to the book to see why. They include Henry Shefflin and Eamonn O’Shea (hurling), Kieran Donaghy and Johnny Cooper (Gaelic football), Stuart Lancaster and Andy Friend (rugby) and Mick McCarthy and Kevin Doyle (soccer).

There are also contributions from a number of Galway coaches and sports stars, among them Corofin footballers Gary Sice and Liam Silke, sports psychologist Tony Óg Regan, physio David Hanly and expert game analyst Dave Morris.

One area Kilgannon was also conscious to promote was young females in sport and some of the role models who lent their experience are ladies footballers Rena Buckley and Valerie Mulcahy (Cork) and Sinead Aherne (Dublin), former Republic of Ireland international Claire Scanlan, Ireland rugby player Lindsay Peat and athletics star Nadia Power.

“That (having the female perspective) was something that was really important,” says Kilgannon. “I tied in early with the 20×20 group and they got me a few (interviewees). I struggled with female coaches, though. I didn’t get one or two of them over the line, and there is not a huge body of them there or, at least, that I’m aware of.”

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

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

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Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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CITY TRIBUNE

Daithí Burke who is likely to be Galway’s only All Star between hurling and football in 2020.

John McIntyre

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Daithí Burke who is likely to be Galway's only All Star between hurling and football in 2020.

NINE Galway players between hurling and football are in line for All-Stars awards in 2020, but the county may have to settle for just one honour.
Aidan Harte, Daithí Burke and Padraic Mannion are all nominated in defence for the hurling team, with Joe Canning, Conor Whelan, Brian Concannon and Cathal Mannion shortlisted for recognition up front.
Galway’s two nominations for the football team – which is set to be dominated by six-in-a-row champions Dublin – are team captain Shane Walsh and the long-serving Paul Conroy.
The anticipation is that only Daithí Burke will make the final cut – a scenario which would see the Turloughmore man win a fifth All-Star award, emulating the feat of Galway greats Joe Cooney, Pete Finnerty and Joe Canning.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Connacht aiming to close the deal this time in refixed clash

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Connacht’s Alex Wootton breaking the tackle of Munster’s Chris Farrell at the Sportsground in their previous outing. The Westerners host the Ospreys in a re-arranged PRO14 tie on Sunday.

RUGBY returns to the Sportsground on Sunday as Connacht take on the Ospreys in a re-arranged PRO14 clash that will kick off at 3pm. Two rounds of European action have been postponed, the Six Nations is on the horizon and players are just keen to be playing rugby, so rarely has a simple league clash against a Welsh region brought so much enthusiasm within the competing squads.

Connacht will be looking to maintain their position among the top three in their conference over the next couple of months. A place in the March 27 final seems beyond them after the narrow defeat to Munster last time out, but securing their place in the Champions Cup for a third successive season would be a major achievement. Head coach Andy Friend underlined the mood in the camp this week.

“We were disappointed to see the European games postponed but I’m pleased we have a fixture to slot in here. This is good for us. It was also good to have one week away from the Sportsground. There’s always a lot going on but just not to have to come in to the office for a few days was good for everyone. People bounced back in this morning and there’s a spring in their step.”

This tie fell by the wayside in November and once the European competitions were postponed two weeks ago, both parties jumped at the chance of bringing the fixture forward to keep momentum going with the Ospreys having won five of their last six games in all competitions and Connacht coming off some high octane if ultimately disappointing run of results during the same period – the one exception being the famous win in the RDS against Leinster.

The main feature in Connacht’s defeats has been indecision and critical errors in the closing minutes of games. Against Racing 92, Bristol, Ulster and Munster, Connacht had late chances to either win games or at least secure some much needed bonus points and on each occasion, the westerners failed to keep their composure and execute. Friend spoke about the impact of those mistakes this week.

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

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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