Athlone City 1
Galway United 0
GALWAY United undermined all the good work Shelbourne’s undefeated start to the season had ended a week earlier when they put in a listless performance in Athlone on Friday night to end their chances for the league title.
Shels again lost points over the weekend, which Bray Wanderers led to a draw. A United win over a side from Athlone Town who were beaten 6-0 in their previous game would have meant that John Caulfield’s side would have reduced the lead to five points.
Instead, a disjointed portrayal of the guests left them empty-handed in a place they’d lost at the start of the season – and where they’ll return for another year in the First Division next season.
Friday’s performance won’t be good enough to win the First Division play-off, let alone knock down players like Finn Harps, Waterford United or – as things stand now – Dundalk in the promotion play-off.
That’s not to say that all hope is lost – United have pulled back into the cover picture thanks to a good series of results that ironically started with a 2-1 home win over Athlone Town, but Friday’s poor performance is cause for concern and left Caulfield even questioned his players’ attitudes after the game.
Paul Doolin took over the home side after replacing sacked Adrian Carberry that week after Town beat UCD 6-0 last weekend.
Given the nature of that defeat, the new manager was a bit of a surprise that the new manager stayed largely at the same XI and just made one non-enforced change and brought in Stephen Meaney for Glen McAuley, who fell to the bench.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.
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