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United’s miserable run continues with big defeat in Derry



Date Published: {J}

Keith Kelly

GALWAY United are on their way to creating a new club record – but it is one no-one wants to achieve as they are now just two league defeats away from the worst ever run in the league in the history of the club.

Defeat to Drogheda United in Terryland Park on Friday night, and a 6-0 thrashing at the hands of Derry City in the Brandywell on Monday, means United have now lost 10 games on the spin, one shy of the 1995/96 run of 11 consecutive defeats in a season which saw United finish bottom of the Premier Division, 20 points off safety.

While the season is just one-third of the way through, the game with fellow strugglers Drogheda United last Friday night was billed as a ‘must-win’ fixture, and the Tribesmen were looking good at half time to end their wretched run, having taken the lead in the 21st minute through Mikey Gilmore’s first goal for the club.

Despite facing into a blustery wind in the second half, United were still shading matters against a side that hadn’t won a game all season before Friday night and, like the home side, went into the match on the back of an eight-game losing run.

However when substitute Darragh Hannapy grabbed an equaliser for Drogheda in the 63rd minute after a good move down the left, whatever scrap of confidence there was in the United side crumbled, and they conceded again four minutes later, Mark O’Brien getting on the end of a through-ball to fire past Greg Fleming.

United had a couple of chances to nick a point, but Enda Curran fired over when through on goalkeeper Stephen Trimble, and then couldn’t direct his header from a Shane Keogh cross on target.

The result was hardly the ideal preparation for the daunting trip to the Brandywell on Monday night, and United’s worst fears were borne out as Eamon Zayed scored four in a rout of Sean Connor’s side.


The home side were three up at the break, with James McEleney firing them into the lead in the seventh minute, and James McClean and Zayed adding goals in the 24th and 45th minutes respectively.

It was all one way traffic, and the only surprise was that Derry didnlt add more than the three they managed in the second half, all of which came courtesy of Zayed. He grabbed his second of the game in the 74th minute, completed the hat-trick from the penalty spot in the 84th minute after Paul Sinnott took down McClean in the box, and then completed the rout in injury time.

United’s heaviest-ever defeat was at the Brandywell in the 1989/90 season when the home side ran out 9-1 winners on a humiliating day for the club. The only grace from last Monday was the fact that record loss was not surpassed.

Sean Connor’s squad need to get something from their next league home game at home to Bray on Friday week, not only to get some badly-needed points on the board, but to also ensure they don’t go into the history books as one of the club’s worst-ever sides as well as ending their worst-ever run of home results – United have taken just one point from eight games at Terryland so far this season.

Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Archive News

Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


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Archive News

Athenry fail to take chances as they bow out of Junior Cup



Date Published: 29-Jan-2013

Athenry FC 1

Kilbarrack United 2

(After extra time)

For the second year in succession Athenry were done in extra time in the FAI Junior Cup as last season’s beaten finalist’s came from behind to snatch an excellent game in Moanbawn on Sunday afternoon.

On a heavy pitch that was only playable following extensive groundwork by club officials all morning, the home side were by far the better side in the opening half, but failed to take advantage of a number of opportunities that came their way.

An Alan O’Donovan penalty gave them a merited advantage just after the restart, but thereafter were on the back foot as Kilbarrack took over, but for all their pressing, the home rearguard were dealing comfortably with their forays.

However they were struck a body blow just six minutes from time, as big striker Keith Kirwan was left all alone at the far post to head the equaliser and from that point on the Dubliners were the better side.

They started off the extra time in the ascendancy and enjoying all the momentum before striking for a good winning goal on 104 minutes. A strong bench allowed them to make some necessary changes and it was not a facility that was available to Athenry manager Gabriel Glavin.

With Gary Forde and Gary Delaney out through suspension following their sending off against OLBC in the previous round, and Seamie Crowe injured, it left their bench rather threadbare with just a number of young squad players available.

Playing with the aid of the slight incline and any wind advantage going, the home side had a Connor Cannon effort on target in the opening minute, while John Meleady was just over with a flick at the other end.

Meleady then tested Andrew Walsh who saved comfortably, before the goalkeeper pulled off a brilliant double save on 14 minutes.

Firstly he went full length to push away a Meleady shot and was then back on his feet to parry David Jackson’s close-range rebound.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

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