With both sides having started the season with two straight defeats, tomorrow’s game will have added significance for the loser, if there is one.
When analysing both sides results, Harps fans will be the happier of both sets of supporters. Their narrow defeat to Cork on opening day, followed by the 8 goal thriller at the Carlisle Grounds will give Ollie Horgan lots of belief that they can get results in the Premier Division. Added to that, the pitch in Ballybofey is certainly in their favour. They are more used to playing on the pitch, so its often a great leveller.
Seaking on the club’s website Manager Ollie Horgan said, “Just because we are at home and Galway have lost their two opening games won’t give us much of advantage in the light of the way we lost against Bray. Yes we need to take advantage of playing at Finn Park but it won’t be easy because Galway badly need a result as well.”
Finn harps injury concerns over goalkeeper Ciaran Gallagher who sustained a head injury in the Carlisle Grounds last weekend. Danny Morrissey also remains a big doubt with the knock to the knee that forced him off in the second half of the Cork game a fortnight ago. Defender Damian McNulty is struggling with a shoulder problem.
For Galway United fans, things couldn’t be more different. A disappointing opening day home defeat to Drogheda United, a game they probably should have won, was followed by a crushing 4-0 defeat to Cork City in Turners Cross. Its a real struggle for the Tribesmen, and anything other than some sort of result, will see Shane Keegan facing mounting pressure.
Speaking to local newspaper The Galway Advertiser Keegan said,”To be honest, considering we are looking to get points on the board, to have two cracks at it in the space of a couple of days is great”, referring to Monday’s other game at home to Shamrock Rovers.
“I do think our fitness levels are quite good, so managing the two games won’t be much a problem to us. We might have to change some of the personnel, but I have confidence we do have a bit of strength in depth there – we can make three, four or five changes without weakening the team in any great, shape or form.”
“To get two bites of the cherry is what we need really because there is no getting away from the fact that we are disappointed with the start.”
Keegan believes the next two results could put Galway in the position they had planned to be,saying “The Cork game, let’s be honest, at the start of the season when you are looking at where you are going to pick up points, you probably aren’t pinpointing that one. If we can make a good impression over the two games at the weekend, to try to regain some ground, we could be back to where we intended to be after four games if we had a right good weekend.”
Keegan knows that the supporters patience wont last forever, “I’m realistic enough to know they aren’t going to have endless patience, nor would I expect them to.”
“We need to start getting points on the board, to keep that support and to keep supporters happy. I have to say I have been very impressed with the attitude of the players going through this bit of a rough patch, yet the mentality still has been very good.”
It’s going to be a great night in front of what should be another huge crowd in Ballybofey.