Not the start Utd wanted but still plenty to build on


From this week's Galway City Tribune

From this week's Galway City Tribune

Not the start Utd wanted but still plenty to build on Not the start Utd wanted but still plenty to build on

Galway United 0

St Patrick’s Athletic 1

GALWAY United’s return to the Premier Division on Friday night after a seven-year absence didn’t go to plan, but there were plenty of positives for the home side to take from the game – and some valuable lessons as well.

The game was decided after just 150 seconds, when Jamie Lennon pounced on some hesitant defending by debutante, Garry Buckley, to smash a first-time shot into the top corner of the net, giving Brendan Clarke no chance.

Buckley was one of two new faces in the United starting XI, with Karl O’Sullivan handed a starting berth on the right wing being the other, but both will struggle for fond memories from their bow in maroon.

Buckley’s night was cut short by injury in the 66th minute – and given his injury problems of late, that is a concern for United – while O’Sullivan’s involvement was ended in the 84th minute when he was substituted.

Stephen Walsh is at the other end of his United career, Friday’s game marking his 300th appearance for the club, but it ended on a self-inflicted sour note, and he will pay the price for that for at least the next three games, depending on the referee’s report and subsequent disciplinary hearing.

The game had tipped into the 79th minute and United were still probing for an equaliser when Tom Costello – another making his United bow, this time from the bench – hit the deck after a tangle of legs with Conor Keeley.

The penalty appeals were waved away by Tipperary referee Eoghan O’Shea as the ball was cleared, and seconds later he blew his whistle to stop play and went straight for his back pocket to flash a red card to Walsh after an interaction between player and official.

We don’t know if it was for physical contact or for verbals, but either way, Walsh is long enough playing the game to know that behaviour is completely unacceptable.

Pictured: Galway United’s Edward McCarthy breaking away from Joseph Redmond of St Patrick’s Athletic during Friday night’s Premier Division tie at Eamonn Deasy Park. Photos: Joe O’Shaughnessy.

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