Kevin Walsh dismisses ‘guff’ around Galway’s tactics after ‘raw’ defeat

September 19, 2021 0 By HearthstoneYarns

KEVIN WALSH WAS at a loss to explain Galway’s second-half collapse in yesterday’s Connacht SFC final. 

The Tribesmen looked on course to claim their 48th provincial crown when they led Roscommon by five at half-time, but by the end of the 80-odd minutes it was the visitors who were celebrating a four-point victory.

The hosts managed just a single point from play in the second-half, which highlighted their struggles in attack. Galway’s forward play was laboured in the face of Roscommon’s defensive web and by the end of the game, four of their starting six forwards were sitting on the bench.

They saw six shots either go wide or drop short during the latter period.

“The second half we just didn’t seem to get our hands on the ball,” said Kevin Walsh.

“We overturned the ball maybe two or three times at the start of the second half, when we were attacking, and the next 20 minutes we didn’t seem to get our hands on the ball.

“They seemed to be winning all the breaking ball and running at us. We certainly weren’t as good defensively in the second half.

“We’ll have to evaluate it during the week. One thing for sure is it wasn’t a consistent performance.”

Back-to-back All-Ireland club champions Corofin play a free-wheeling brand of attacking football, in stark contrast to the county side who’ve persisted with their defensive approach.

It was put to Walsh that their lack of scoring chances after the break may have been down to the number of bodies they filtered back behind the ball. 

“Did you think so?” he replied.

“I don’t think it was one of the reasons, because there’s a lot of guff out there about that.

“At the end of the day we didn’t get our hands on the ball when we needed to get our hands on the ball. There was no different structure in the first half compared to the second half.  

“We’ve had our chat in there. Whether a change in mindset in being able to get the dirty ball and whatever it is … but when you don’t have the ball you defend space, and when you have it you attack space and that’s what the boys did in the first half.

“Ten points in the first half is good in these conditions, so no different instructions but you need to get your hands on the ball.

Conor Hussey takes possession ahead of Liam Silke.

Source: Tommy Grealy/INPHO

“It’s three weeks now. We’ve club football next weekend as well here, so we’ve two weeks after that and we’ll have to see who comes in the draw.  

“But at this moment it’s raw, and there’s no point in saying too much about that.

“Certainly after a week is over and they get the club out of the way, lads I’d be hoping will be ready to come back and try and put this right.” 

Galway have three weeks before their round 4 qualifier match. A victory in that tie would seal a return to the Super 8s. They’ll be keen to get Fiontain O Curraoin back after his injury-enforced departure on 22 minutes.

Walsh didn’t appear optimistic that Damien Comer would be fit to return from a broken foot in time for their next outing.

“I’ve touched on this last week. He’s not ready. We just have to see what happens over the next while.

“The fact we’re going to be out a week earlier now obviously brings it a bit closer. If we got over today we’d have four weeks, we now have three weeks.”

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