Shamrock Rovers and their striker Gary Shaw continued their excellent record against Galway United with a 2-1 on Monday night. Shaw scored twice on the night, having got the winner the last time the Hoops visited Eamon Deacy Park. It was also Rovers’ ninth consecutive league win at the venue and their 15th league win in a row over the Tribesman.
With that record their was a collective groan from the home fans after it took just two minutes for Shamrock Rovers to take the lead. Ronan Finn played a pin point through ball from the half way line to set Gary Shaw in on goal. On his first appearance of the season, Shaw held off Stephen Folan to slot the ball home past Conor Winn.
While the Hoops had more of the possession, they didn’t cause Winn too much difficulty bar one instance in the opening period. Winn wasn’t troubled by Finn’s shot from distance 11 minutes in but was nearly caught out by a move that started with his opposite number in the 20th minute.
Tomer Chencinski got the Hoops moving quickly with a throw that went all the way to Meenan in the United half. Winn came racing out from goal and after Meenan lifted the ball over the ‘keeper it looked like he would score. However David Cawley’s superb tackle just took the ball away from the Rovers player at the crucial time.
In between this the Tribesmen weren’t helped by losing Padraic Cunningham due to injury just after the quarter hour mark. United failed to test Chencinski especially as a number of times the Hoops held a high line catching United offside.
Trevor Clark, who had been substituted on Friday at half time due to a shoulder injury, at times seemed to struggle with his arm again. However he was still able to make the effort to get up the line to trouble Colm Horgan.
Miele tested Winn with a free kick five minutes before the break after Folan took down the goalscorer Shaw in a central position 35 yards from goal. The Rovers midfielder got the ball up and over the wall but Winn was alive to the danger.
United had earned their first point of the season last Friday against Finn Harps after an excellent second half performance and they were able to up their game once again after the break. The Hoops were under a bit of pressure after losing two of their opening three games and needed to get that second goal to ease the nerves of the players and the 200 or so travelling Rovers fans.
When Finn was taken down by Cawley on 56 minutes, Connolly swung the resulting free kick from the right edge of the area dangerously into the box. Winn punched clear under more pressure from his own players than any in a green and white hooped shirt.
A minute later United grabbed an equaliser on the break after a sweeping move following a mistake by Dan Devine. Faherty was involved and when the ball broke to Ronan Murray he scored, albeit with the help of a deflection off Roberto Lopes that wrong footed Chencinski.
A minute after the hour mark Horgan mistimed tackle on Meenan on the edge of the box to go in the book but the wall stood firm for Meenan’s resulting free-kick. However the Hoops retook the lead from the next set piece just two minutes later for what proved to be the winner.
It was more ill discipline from United as Ludden handled the ball to pick up a yellow card. Connolly swung it in with his left boot from the right and when the ball broke to Shaw he rifled the ball home with a United defender’s touch helping the Hoops this time around.
At the other end Ludden’s left foot in-swinging cross found Cawley’s head but it dropped just wide of the post with 15 remaining. Moments later Holohan’s early effort required Chencinski to dive full length to his right to save.
That was as close as the home side came, even with a late injury time corner that saw Conor Winn to come up. The Hoops were able to hold out for their second win of the season ahead of Cork City’s visit to Tallaght on St. Patrick’s Day – on the day the Tribesmen travel to take on Bohemians.
Galway United: Conor Winn; Colm Horgan, Lee Grace, Stephen Folan, Mark Ludden; David Cawley, Alex Byrne (Jesse Devers 89), Gavan Holohan; Gary Shanahan (Conor Melody 78), Padraic Cunningham (Vinny Faherty 16), Ronan Murray.
Subs not used: Ciaran Nugent (gk), Maurice Nugent, Aaron Conway, Declan Sharkey.
Booked: Colm Horgan (61), Mark Ludden (63), Ronan Murray (67).
Shamrock Rovers: Tomer Chencinski; Simon Madden, Daniel Devine, Dave Webster, Trevor Clarke; Roberto Lopes, Ronan Finn, Ryan Connolly; Darren Meenan (Paul Corry 69), Gary Shaw (Sean Boyd 75), Brandon Miele.
Subs not used: Kevin Horgan (gk), Sean Heaney, David McAllister, James Doona, Michael O'Connor.
Booked: Trevor Clarke (38), Roberto Lopes (73), David Webster (81).
Referee: Robert Hennessy.
Extratime.ie man of the match: Gary Shaw (Shamrock Rovers)
Macdara Ferris is a contributor since 2007 to Hoops Scene (Shamrock Rovers' match day programme) and the co-author of Tallaght Time: Shamrock Rovers 2009 to 2012. He still believes that one day he will see Rovers win the FAI Cup. The first international game he attended was Luxembourg being dispatched 2-1 at Lansdowne Road by Jack Charlton's Ireland team.
He has been a writer with extratime.ie since 2012 covering the League of Ireland, the Irish National team and a few Champions League finals. He has also been known to pop up in far flung places like Ballybofey, Belfast, Berlin and Brazil to report for extratime.
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