Sligo Rovers 2
Galway United 2
After extra time Galway United win 3-1 on penalties
A largely second-string Galway United side went through to the semi-finals of the EA Sports Cup on Monday afternoon after defeating a full-strength Sligo Rovers side on penalties in the Showgrounds.
Successful spot-kicks from the excellent Stephen Folan, as well as Padraic Cunningham and Gavan Holohan, secured United’s passage to the last four in a game that won’t live long in the memory for anyone apart from those with a sadomasochistic streak to them.
After 90 minutes of dire stuff, a football match suddenly broke out in extra-time. The home side took the lead, United levelled within 60 seconds and then got their own noses in front; before Sligo Rovers sent the tie to penalties, thanks to a penalty five minutes from time.
It was the visitors who prevailed in the spot-kick lottery which, for a time, neither side appeared to want to win: Folan found the net with the first penalty, but the next four were all missed – Craig Roddan for Sligo Rovers (saved), Ronan Murray for United (saved), Liam Martin for the home side (wide), and United’s Colm Horgan (saved).
Kieran Sadlier levelled the shootout at 1-1 after three penalties each with the next effort, before Cunningham edged United back in front. Jonah Ayunga then clattered the crossbar with the home side’s fourth spot-kick, leaving Holohan to convert United’s fifth effort to secure their place in the semi-finals.
Shane Keegan made nine changes to the side which had stunned Dundalk in the league the previous Friday night, with Horgan and Folan the only two players to start both games, as the United manager obviously had one eye on this Friday’s crunch league tie away to Drogheda United.
It was the first home game in charge for new Sligo Rovers manager, Gerard Lyttle, who named a near full-strength side for the tie, with John Russell returning from suspension to take the place of Craig Roddan in midfield being the only change he made to the side which drew 1-1 with Drogheda United three days earlier.
The game started promisingly enough, but faded in quality the longer it went on, before really sparking to life in extra time with four goals. There was little between the sides in the early stages, before the home side got on top but there was a serious lack of quality from both sides in front of goal.
The home side thought they had opened the scoring when Mick Leahy headed home a Sadlier cross at the back-post in the 10th minute, but the goal was ruled out for offside.
Horgan was in the right place to block a Raffaele Cretaro shot in the 22nd minute, while at the other end, Michéal Schlingermann was relieved to see the ball bobble across the face of goal after a mistake by the goalkeeper gifted Cunningham a sight of goal.
For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.
Water outages across Knocknacarra and Barna due to burst watermain
Galway Bay fm newsroom – There are water outages across Knocknacarra and Barna this morning due to a burst watermain
The burst is in a rising main from Clifton Hill in Galway City to Tonabrucky Reservoir
The city council and Irish Water says while every effort is being made to maintain supply to as many customers as possible, the burst has caused water levels in Tonabrucky Reservoir to deplete
Houses and businesses in Knocknacarra, Barna and surrounding areas will experience low pressure and outages.
Dedicated water service crews have mobilised and repairs are underway and are expected to be completed by mid-afternoon.
Traffic management will be in place and Letteragh Road will be closed between Sliabh Rua and Tonabrucky Cross until 6pm.
Householders and businessses are being asked to conserve water where possible to reduce the pressure on local supplies and allow reservoir levels to restore.
Woman sustains serious injuries after being struck by firework in Eyre Square
Gardaí are appealing for witnesses after a young woman was struck in the face by a firework in Eyre Square in the city overnight.
It happened shortly after midnight and gardai say it’s understood the firework had been launched from close to the Tourist Information Kiosk.
The young woman suffered serious injuries and was hospitalised as a result.
Gardaí understand there was a large group of people in Eyre Square at the time and are now asking that any person who may have witnessed the incident make contact with the investigating team.
In particular Gardaí are appealing to anyone who may have video footage of the incident, either on mobile phone, CCTV or dash-cam to make contact with them.
This incident comes just days after a policing committee meeting was told of increasing concern about anti social behaviour around Eyre Square.
Garda chief suggests closing Eyre Square to curb anti-social behaviour
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Closing Eyre Square at night-time was among the radical suggestions put forward by Galway’s top Garda this week – in response to claims that the city centre’s famous landmark had become a ‘no-go area’ after dark.
It comes as Gardaí confirmed that since January they issued almost 500 fines for breaches of the city’s alcohol bylaws, which prohibit the consumption of alcohol in public spaces.
Responding to claims that people were afraid to visit parts of the city centre at night due to anti-social behaviour, Chief Superintendent Tom Curley said that the authorities might have to look at closing Eyre Square at certain times.
Chief Supt Curley also said that improved lighting and better CCTV were other tools that could be used to deter anti-social behaviour and to detect crime in the city centre.
“I’d need another five officers in there – and I haven’t got them,” said Chief Supt Curley of the requirement for more Gardaí on patrol in Eyre Square.
He was responding to a charge by former mayor of Galway, Councillor Frank Fahy, who said Eyre Square was dangerous at night. “It’s a no-go area,” he said at a City Joint Policing Committee (JPC) meeting this week.
Cllr Fahy said that the illegal activity and anti-social behaviour in the city centre was a product of the Covid-19 pandemic and people socialising outdoors. Eyre Square was safe pre-Covid, he said.
In a written reply to the JPC, Chief Supt Curley said that anti-social behaviour issues had been ‘de-escalated’ along the city’s canals, Woodquay and Spanish Arch ‘as a result of extra Garda patrols’.
“The resulting consequences have led to crowd movement from these areas (and they) are now congregating at Eyre Square. Garda attention is concentrated on Eyre Square, however the return of students and the continued restrictions has led to increased numbers,” he said.
(Photo: a scene from Eyre Square at night this week taken from a video circulated on social media)
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.