Impressive win for Dublin leaves Galway still fighting to stay in division

Con O’Callaghan leads line brilliantly for Dessie Farrell’s well-drilled outfit, shooting nine points and tormenting Galway’s overworked defence

National Football League, Division One: Galway 0-14 Dublin 0-22

All-Ireland champions Dublin remain on course for a place in the Division One league final after a straightforward victory over a depleted Galway at a wintry Pearse Stadium in Salthill.

Dublin racked up a fourth win of the campaign in impressive fashion, with Con O’Callaghan again playing a leading role, while the Tribesmen remain under relegation threat after a third defeat in six matches.

O’Callaghan led the line brilliantly for Dessie Farrell’s well-drilled outfit, shooting nine points (three from play) and tormenting Galway’s overworked defence.

Padraic Joyce’s injury-hit squad were chasing the game from the early stages and, once again, looked short of ideas up front in the absence of injured attackers Shane Walsh, Damien Comer and Matthew Tierney, as well as inspirational captain Seán Kelly.


The visitors played most of the football in the opening half and they turned in an impressive second quarter in particular to lead 0-10 to 0-6 at half-time.

Farrell had used the opportunity to play Evan Comerford in goal, while Tom Lahiff, Killian McGinnis, Daire Newcombe and Killian O’Gara also came into the starting team.

All of this quintet didn’t look out of place during what was a largely uneventful game.

Two early frees from Galway’s top scorer, Cillian Ó Curraoin, gave the home supporters something to shout about, but Dublin quickly took control, and six points scored in just over 10 minutes – three from the aforementioned Con O’Callaghan – saw them surge ahead by 0-8 to 0-3.

Galway kept the scoreboard ticking over through defender Johnny McGrath, Rory Cunningham and Ó Curraoin, but Dublin’s scores were coming a lot easier, as Killian McGinnis (2), Seán Bugler and Brian Fenton showed in the second quarter.

Padraic Joyce introduced veteran Paul Conroy in an effort to get back on track, and two superb points from Ó Curraoin helped to close the gap a little.

But Dublin stuck to their game-plan and shot seven of the next nine points during a dazzling 11-minute spell to settle the argument.

The impressive Ross McGarry, Comerford (free), Ciarán Kilkenny, Tom Lahiff, substitute Colm Basquel and O’Callaghan (2) all clipped points to leave Galway trailing by 0-10 to 0-18 after 60 minutes.

The remaining quarter of an hour was little more than a training spin for the winners, while Galway, to their credit, kept plugging away and added four further points.

Impact subs Liam Ó Conghaile and Jack McCabe shot two of those scores, with Ó Curraoin, the top scorer, also chipping in with a couple of frees.

But Dublin put the gloss on their success with three unanswered points from O’Callaghan (two frees) and Bugler to round off an impressive afternoon’s work.

Galway: C Gleeson; J McGrath (0-1), S Fitzgerald, S Mulkerrin; E Kelly, J Daly, D O’Flaherty; C Darcy, J Maher (0-1); J Heaney, D McHugh, C Sweeney (0-1); C Ó Curraoin (0-8, five frees), N Daly, R Cunningham (0-1). Subs used: P Conroy for N Daly (HT); L Ó Conghaile (0-1) for Darcy (57); J McCabe (0-1) for Ó Curraoin (57); P Egan for Heaney (61).

Dublin: E Comerford (0-1, one free); S MacMahon, T Lahiff (0-2), D Newcombe; C Murphy, J Small, K McGinnis (0-2); B Howard, B Fenton (0-1); R McGarry (0-2), S Bugler (0-3), C Kilkenny (0-1); K O’Gara, C O’Callaghan (0-9, five frees, mark), N Scully. Subs used: C Basquel (0-1) for O’Gara (48); J McCaffrey for McGinnis (51); P Mannion for McGarry (54); L O’Dell for Scully (54); T Clancy for MacMahon (68).

Referee: B Cawley (Kildare).