ALL THINGS IRELAND: July 2017
IRELAND BEAT NEW ZEALAND FOR THE 1ST TIME 40-29 IN HISTORIC WIN IN CHICAGO...

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

GALWAY DEMOLISH DONEGAL IN SLIGO

Galway went on a scoring spree to book an All-Ireland quarter-final showdown with Kerry next weekend after stunning Donegal by 4-17 to 0-14 in a surprisingly one-sided encounter at Markievicz Park.


It was a dismal night for Donegal football. They had three players black-carded, missed a penalty and played most of the second-half with 13 men when Michael Murphy and Martin McElhinney picked up black cards with all subs used.


But the game was over as a contest by then as Galway, hoping to bounce back from the shock Connacht final loss to Roscommon,
destroyed a shaky Donegal defence.


Johnny Heaney was the main tormentor for Galway as he fired home 2-2 with both goals coming in the opening half as the Tribesmen blitzed Donegal.
Rory Gallagher's men just had no answer to a powerful performance from Galway, who had the game wrapped up by half-time when they led by 3-9 to 0-7.

The Ulster side played most of the second-half with just 13 men when Michael Murphy and Martin McElhinney picked up black cards when they had all six subs used.


The big breakthrough came for Galway after 16 minutes when Heaney got in for the first of his goals after Sean Armstrong and
the impressive Ian Burke had set him up and he fisted to the net.
Armstrong then pointed a free before the disorganised Donegal defence was again punished when goalkeeper Mark Anthony McGinley tripped Flynn to concede a penalty.

It got worse for Donegal when referee Anthony Nolan dished out a black card to the goalkeeper while his replacement,
Peter Boyle, stood little chance against Liam Silke's penalty.
That made it 2-6 to 0-5 after 25 minutes and Conroy quickly added a point to turn the screw and by the interval they were out of sight when Heaney got his second goal.


The loss of Murphy and McElhinney meant no way back for Donegal who missed a penalty when Paddy McBreaty's effort was saved by Bernard Power.

And Galway finished in style with Danny Cummins getting their fourth goal in the dying moments of the game.
One of the biggest cheers of the evening though was when Michael Meehan made his long-awaited return to championship football after his lengthy battle with injury.
He looked sharp in a brief cameo role as he tasted this level of football for the first time since 2014.

Galway finished the game with 14 men when full-back Declan Kyne picked up a second yellow card but it mattered little as they eased to victory.
They face Kerry in the quarter-finals on Sunday at Croke Park.




Tuesday, July 11, 2017

ABYSMAL GALWAY LOSE TO ROSCOMMON IN CONNAUGHT FINAL AT PEARSE STADIUM

Roscommon upset the odds to hammer Galway by nine points and win the Connacht Senior Football title at Pearse Stadium in Salthill.
It was a richly deserved victory for the underdogs who out-fought and out-played Galway all over the pitch.
A lot of the credit for this victory must go to manager Kevin McStay who refused to let the constant criticism aimed his way
from within the county hold back the team’s preparation and he got his tactics spot on on the day.
Backed by a strong breeze, Roscommon dominated the first half from start to finish.


Two points from captain CiarĂ¡n Murtagh and one from his brother Diarmuid had the Rossies three points in front
before Shane Walsh got Galway on the board with a free.
Galway conceded two unnecessary scores when goalkeeper Rory Lavelle’s short kick-out strategy backfired and
 Roscommon won turnovers and forced frees which the Murtagh brothers converted.
A nice point from wing back Conor Devaney helped Kevin McStay’s men into a 0-06 to 0-01 lead after 12 minutes.
Shane Walsh fired over a Galway point in the 14th minute but incredibly it would be their last score until the 35th minute and their only one from play in the whole half.

Roscommon responded to that score in the best possible fashion - they went straight down the other end and rattled the net with a well-worked goal.
Corner forward Cian Connolly collected a beautiful long pass from Diamuid Murtagh and cooly slotted the ball into the bottom corner.
Roscommon almost shot themselves in the foot in the following fifteen minutes when they hit six wides in a row and failed to extend their advantage in howling wind and rain.
Galway rued a missed goal chance when Michael Daly saw his effort come back off the post.
A Diarmuid Murtagh point put the Rossies seven in front at half time (1-07 to 0-03) and their fans must have been wondering if they had done enough with the wind at their backs.
Galway began the second half with intent and, finally, someone added to Shane Walsh’s only scores when Damien Comer kicked a point.
The key moment of the match came in the 41st minute when, with Galway’s tails up, Roscommon scored their second goal.
Brian Stack collected another wayward Galway kick-out and ran straight at the defence to bury the ball past Lavelle.
To their credit, Galway showed character to hit the next six points as Comer, midfielder Paul Conroy and captain Gary O’Donnell all showed some much-needed leadership.
Roscommon refused to panic however, and a Diarmuid Murtagh free eased their supporters nerves before Cian Connolly stretched their lead back out to five.
Galway failed to register a score in the last 20 minutes as their attacks became increasingly desperate.
Roscommon ran out comfortable winners with Conor Devaney adding to his first-half point with two fine late scores and substitute Donie Smith helped himself to a brace.
Michael Lundy and Damien Comer were sent off for Galway following a late brawl and Roscommon’s Cian Connolly was also dismissed for two yellow card offences.
Nothing could spoil the day for the Roscommon supporters, however,
who poured onto the pitch in their droves at the final whistle to celebrate a first provincial title in seven years.