Classifieds Advertise Archive Subscriptions Family Announcements Photos Digital Editions/Apps
Connect with us

Sports

In-tune Galway head for Harps

Published

on

Galway FC central defender Alex Byrne will have extra defensive duties tonight due to the absence of both Martin Conneely and Marc Ludden.

Galway FC may have to swop the team bus for an ambulance this weekend with Tommy Dunne’s squad hit by a number of injuries ahead of tonight’s tip to Donegal for the clash with Finn Harps (8pm).

Ryan Manning has missed the last couple of games with a wrist injury, and he is joined on the sideline tonight by Martin Conneely (Achilles), Derek O’Brien (ankle) and Marc Ludden (ankle), leaving Dunne with a major defensive headache for tonight’s tie.

Conneely had been playing through the pain barrier for the past month or so, but he finally succumbed to injury to miss last week’s comfortable win over Shamrock Rovers B, and while he returned to training this week, the injury flared up again, forcing him to sit this one out.

O’Brien also had a relapse with an ankle injury he picked up against Waterford United a fortnight ago; while Ludden took a bang to his ankle which continued to be tender all week, marking him a likely absentee for tonight.

The absence of Conneely and Ludden – couple with the departure of Marty Owens for a scholarship in America – means Dunne will have to do a serious juggling job with his squad for tonight’s trip to Ballybofey against a Finn Harps side that has lost just once in their last nine League and Cup games.

“With Martin out, Stephen [Walsh] will probably play centre-back as well. I thought he did quite well against Shamrock Rovers, he is as hard as nails but there were a couple of small things that he needs to work on, but in saying that, it was his first time in a while playing in that position.

“Marc Ludden is a real doubt, and if he is missing as well, we’ll have to do a bit of juggling. We might move Paul Sinnott back into defence, though I wouldn’t like to lose him out of midfield. Aaron McDonagh also gives us an option – he can play left-back, and he did well in a practice game we had on Tuesday night, so we’ll just see how it goes,” Dunne told City Sport yesterday.

While he has a defensive headache due to absentees, Dunne is faced with a different kind of problem at the other end of the pitch – who to leave out! Vinny Faherty and Jake Keegan both scored twice in the win over Shamrock Rovers, while Enda Curran impressed in the 20 minutes he saw at the end of the game and capped his debut with a goal.

Judging by the pre-match comments of Finn Harps manager Ollie Horgan, his side may as well not turn up tonight given the ‘riches’ Galway FC possess in the attacking third of the pitch, a side he suggests is a step-up in class for the Finn Park men.

“Galway are the best attacking side in the league with a wealth of options in Vinny Faherty, Jason Molloy, Gary Shanahan, Ryan Manning, Jake Keegan as well as Enda Curran who signed from Derry City recently. Ryan Connolly is one of the best midfield players in the league so we will have our work cut out,” Horgan said.

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

 

CITY TRIBUNE

Connacht swing into action against Cardiff in expanded league structure

Published

on

Injured scrum half Caolin Blade who will miss Connacht's opening game in the new United Rugby Championship away to Cardiff on Friday night.

By Rob Murphy

RUGBY is back this weekend as Connacht make their debut in a brand new expanded competition. The United Rugby Championship has replaced the old PRO14 with the top four South African sides joining the teams from Ireland Scotland, Wales and Italy in a  new look 16 team tournament.

Over the next seven months, Andy Friend’s men will play 18 games as they look to secure one of the eight play off places up for grabs.

On Friday Connacht will begin their campaign in Wales where they’ll take on Cardiff at the Arms Park (7:35) for an important opening day fixture. With a number of difficult inter-provincials tussles on the horizon, a good start is badly needed.

On Wednesday, Connacht Rugby announced that they were moving their October 23 fixture with Ulster to the Aviva Stadium to mark the lifting of restrictions throughout the country for crowds at live events. The stand alone fixture will be a huge opportunity for the organisation to showcase the provincial team to a wide audience and they are hoping that Connacht fans will travel east in big numbers to watch their side play in the national stadium.

It will be the second time in a little over a year that Connacht have played at the venue having faced the same opponents there last August at a time when crowds weren’t permitted, You have to go back to 1986 for the previous appearance at the Dublin 4 venue. Forgoing home advantage for a league fixture looks like a risk worth taking as the novel event should generate a lot of interest among rugby fans who have waited over 18 months to watch their side play live.

While there is scope for a full house in Wales this Friday, Connacht’s opening home fixture against the Bulls the following Friday and their clash with the Dragons in Galway and Munster in Limerick later in the month will all fall under the current fifty percent capacity restrictions in the Republic of Ireland, so this is why that the Ulster fixture in Dublin will be a watershed moment for the campaign.

For more, read this week’s Connacht 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.

 

Continue Reading

CITY TRIBUNE

Moran’s late fortuitous goal leaves Salthill men stunned

Published

on

Monivea-Abbey's Caelom Mulry gets to the ball ahead of Tom Considine of Salthill/Knocknacarra during Saturday's senior football championship tie at Kenny Park. Photos: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

Monivea-Abbey 1-10

Salthill-Knocknacarra 0-10

Gerard Mulreaney at Kenny Park

THEY say that fortune favours the brave, and that was certainly evident at a very wet Kenny Park, Athenry on Saturday afternoon

A brave performance from Monivea-Abbey, full of heart, grit and determination, saw them produce the shock of the weekend when they upset Salthill-Knocknacarra in a dramatic ending to this senior championship game.

Three points down at the second water break, Monivea-Abbey came storming back in the last quarter, scoring a goal and two points without reply to take the victory and give themselves an outside chance of reaching the quarter finals.

Both sides came into this must-win encounter on the back of opening round defeats, Monivea-Abbey losing to Oughterard while Salthill-Knocknacarra surprisingly came unstuck in their opener to Caherlistrane.

Salthill-Knocknacarra were first off the mark in the second minute when Robert Finnerty found Tomo Culhane who popped his effort over the bar.

Culhane then missed a golden opportunity to score the opening goal just a minute later. He was played in by the industrious John Maher, but the teeneger ended up rushing his shot, and the ball went agonisingly wide.

Monivea-Abbey, who were missing both Cillian McDaid and Cathal Cooley due to injury, hit back when Lee Kenny was fouled by William Finnerty and Brian Moran scored the resulting free kick.

Another goal chance went abegging for Salthill/Knocknacarra on nine minutes when centre-forward Evan Murphy ran in unopposed along the end line, but his shot was straight at Denis Farragher in the Monivea-Abbey goal.

For more, read this week’s Connacht 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.

 

Continue Reading

CITY TRIBUNE

Butler hopes fans will back move to switch home game

Published

on

Jarrad Butler looks on as Caolin Blade looks to break through the Ulster ranks in the PRO14 meeting between the sides in the Sportsground back in December. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

By JOHN FALLON

Connacht skipper Jarrad Butler said the players are looking forward to taking on Ulster at the Aviva Stadium next month when they hope to attract the biggest crowd to attend a rugby match in Ireland in over a year and a half.

With crowd restrictions due to be lifted by the Government just prior to the derby clash against Ulster on Saturday, 23 October, Connacht hope that a crowd of around 30,000 can be achieved for the fixture in the United Rugby Championship.

At present Connacht are restricted to crowds of around 3,000 at the Sportsground and even if all restrictions are lifted, the capacity of the stadium on College Road is limited to just over 8,000.

Coach Andy Friend and club captain Butler have given the decision their full backing, with Connacht consulting with their supporters’ club before deciding to switch the match to Dublin.

Connacht beat Ulster 26-20 behind closed doors there in August last year when competitive rugby restarted in the pandemic, and Butler said players were excited about going back there.

“It is different. We had success at the Aviva against Ulster last year and that was without fans. I think there is an excitement to go back there and, hopefully, be able to play there in front of a lot more Connacht fans than would probably be at the Sportsground.

“The Aviva is one of the best in the country and I think everyone is excited to get the opportunity to play there. The positives definitely outweigh the negatives playing there.

For more, read this week’s Connacht 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.

 

Continue Reading

Local Ads

Local Ads

Advertisement
Advertisement

Facebook

Advertisement

Trending