Five athletes from Galway

Galway is a city full of history and tradition.

This history also cuts across sports. The late great Eamonn Deacy was a Galway native who played Galway Rovers and Galway United, winning the 1991 FAI Cup for the latter. He also played for Aston Villa in the 80’s, winning the European Cup, European Super Cup, and English First Division during his time at the Midlands club.

 Here are some the best athletes from Galway:

1: Thomas Maloney Westgaard (Skiing)

Born in Leka, Norway, Thomas Irish roots stems from his maternal side, his mother from Dunmore, CO Galway.

He finished 14th place at the 15km classic, finishing in the top 15 out of 85 athletes in a time of 40:01.5 at the Winter Olympics in Beijing and has represented team Ireland at two winter Olympics so far, putting the country on the world map in the sports.

More to come from the cross-country skier.

2: Olivia Divily (Gaelic Football)

The Croke-park/LGFA January player of the month has already achieved legendary status in women sport at 26. She was a member of Galway team that won the under 14 All Ireland title against Dublin in 2010 and won the Under 16 edition in 2012.

In January 2022, she won the All-Ireland Championship, defeating Cork side Mourneabbey, adding to an impressive list of trophies.

3. Aaron Conolly (Soccer)

The first of two soccer players on the list. The Brighton and Hove Albion defender on loan to Middlesbrough hails from Oranmore, Co-Galway.

The 5 ft 9 forward has represented Ireland in three youth level set up, the under 17, 19 and 21. He was the leading scorer at the qualifying stage of the 2017 under 17 championship, scoring seven goals in six matches.

The Irish striker has made 45 appearances for Brighton in the premier league and has represented Ireland eight times thus far.

4: Ryan Manning (Soccer)

A local hero due scoring in both legs during Galway United promotion playoff win over University College Dublin to seal a spot in the Irish topflight, Ryan Manning has raked over 100 appearances in the championship for Queens Park Rangers, Rotherham and Swansea in the championship.

With Swansea currently 13th on the championship log, the left back/central midfielder will be looking to secure a promotion berth for the Welsh club next season.

5. John O’Donnell (Boxing)

The 36-year-old London based Irish boxer roots can be traced to CO Galway. John O’Donnell put Irish boxing on the map when he defeated Craig Watson to win the Commonwealth welterweight championship in 2009.

The southpaw boxer once fought on the undercard of Floyd Mayweather bout against Oscar De La Hoya, losing by a second-round stoppage to Christian Solano.

His fight stats read 36 fights, 33 wins (33KO) 3 losses (2KO).

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