In red hot form, Galway United entered the Athlone Town Stadium on Friday night looking to take all three points away from home, and they did just that.
A strong second half performance from the Tribesmen helped secure a 2-1 win over Athlone Town in a highly competitive game in round seven of the League of Ireland First Division campaign.
The home side were the more aggressive side in the first half, testing Galway goalkeeper Conor Kearns in between the posts.
Their quickness on the counter attack caused John Caufield’s men a lot of problems throughout the opening 45 minutes.
Galway had their chances, with a lot of their early attacking moves coming from the left flank through the young Alex Murphy.
The latest League of Ireland startlet has excelled in his first full season in the maroon and white of Galway United and looks to have a great future.
However, the promising left-back was forced to retire from the game in under half an hour due to injury with a suspected knee injury.
His replacement, Stephen Walsh, came on in his more familiar fullback position, despite being used as a forward by Caufield to start the season and is the top scorer for the Tribesmen in the early stages of the season with three goals to his name.
Galway’s closest opportunity to score in the opening half came after 36 minutes of play.
Some great linkup play from the two Galway forwards Jordan Adeyamo and Wilson Waweru opened up the Athlone defense, with the opposing keeper mistiming a clearance after coming off his line.
Adeyamo was able to get a shot towards goal but it was blocked by Noah van Geelen of Athlone Town.
Galway began to use their time on the ball more effectively in the second half, creating chances early on.
The opening goal of the game came just under 15 minutes into the second half.
A long throw in from Killian Brouder made its way into substitute Manu Dimas, the Spaniard connected with a high arcing header that sailed over the head of the Athlone Town goalkeeper, scoring his first goal of the season to put Galway United ahead by one goal to nil.
After 65 minutes Galway United added a second, with Wilson Waweru scoring a brilliant goal.
The energetic forward had his back into an Athlone Town player, and as another long throw sailed into the box, it landed to his feet before he composed himself and backheeled the ball into the bottom corner to put the Tribesmen ahead by two goals to nil.
The game slowed down for the next twenty minutes, as Galway adopted a more defensive approach.
It appeared that they began to switch off, especially when Athlone got a goal back.
Forward Success Edogun, who was an irritance of the Galway United back line for the majority of the game, made a run down the right hand side and Thomas Oluwa found him with a well-timed pass.
The forward made no mistake with the finish, guiding the ball into the bottom corner to make it two goals to one in favour of Galway.
Luckily, the Tribesmen were able to avoid the late surge from Athlone and late penalty claims to take all three points in this truly back-and-forth affair.
Galway United will take the trip to Strokestown Road to face Longford Town next Friday, while Athlone Town head to Turner’s Cross to face Cork City on Friday also, both games kick-off at 7.45pm.
Tickets to these games can be bought on the respective club sites, but you can also tune in on LOI TV for live coverage here.
C. Kearns, C. O’Keeffe, K. Brouder, D. Portilla (subbed for C. Lyons, 75′), M. Rowe (subbed for G. Boylan, 46’), D. Hurley, J. Adeyamo (subbed for M. Dimas, 46’), W. Waweru (subbed for F. Lomboto, 84′), C. McCormack, E. McCarthy, A. Murphy (subbed for S.Walsh 28’)
M. Connor, S.Walsh (subbed on for A. Murphy, 28’), C. Lyons (subbed on for D. Portilla, 75′), G. Boylan (subbed on for M. Rowe, 46’) , M. Dimas (subbed on for J. Adeyamo, 46’), D. O’Shea, F. Lomboto (subbed on for W. Waweru, 84′), E. O’Connor, M. Hemmings.
M, Schlingermann, D. Daly (subbed for C. Ubaezonu, 42′), N. Van Geelen, J. Hulme (subbed for G. Armstrong, 66′), S. Kenny, T. Oluwa, S. Edogun, O. Duffy, A. McBride, Y. Habing (subbed for Q. Nkansah, 59′), C. Kelly.
A. Skerritt, D. Dobbin, A. Spain, Q. Nkansah (subbed on for Y. Habing, 59′), A. Connolly, G. Armstrong (subbed on for J. Hulme, 66′), S. Clarke, D. Curtin, C. Mulready, C. Ubaezonu (subbed on for D. Daly, 42′).
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