Positive Covid tests halt United's momentum

Galway United’s fixture against first division title-chasers Drogheda United at Eamonn Deacy Park on Friday has been postponed due to two players testing positive for Covid-19.

Galway United confirmed in a statement on Tuesday that the game would have to be rescheduled for a later date in October.

“Two positive COVID-19 cases have been identified in the Galway United squad, and as a result the whole first team squad and staff are now restricting their movements and awaiting tests, following HSE and government guidelines,” the statement said.

“Galway United will continue to follow all protocols relating to COVID-19 and the players will isolate for the required period of time.”

Ultimately it means United almost certainly must face three matches in the closing week of the campaign against Bray Wanderers, Drogheda, and UCD.

John Caulfield’s rapidly improving outfit had chalked up a sixth win in seven matches when defeating Longford Town 6-2 at Bishopsgate last Saturday. It was a remarkable turnaround from United, who trailed by two goals early on before Marc Ludden netted a brace to restore parity.

Substitute Carlton Ubaezuonu grabbed a hat-trick, while Wilson Waweru also pounced for a rampant United.

Manager Caulfield is adamant about United’s considerable potential. “That is what you want, you want the guys to do what you see in training,” Caulfield says. “There is no point training during the week and then come out on the pitch when the pressure is on and they don't do it.

“You have to do it when it counts and where it counts is here, not in the training ground. From that point of view in the second half we were a totally different team, but the boys played like they can play. That is what we are working on.”

With two of the three remaining games set to take place Corribside, Caulfield wants to improve United’s record at the Dyke Road venue.

“Our home form hasn't been great, so we have to go out to see whether we can replicate the Longford performance,” Caulfield states.

“If we do, we have a great chance; if we don't, we won't. It is all about consistency at this level, getting players every week, to make sure they are ready to go. The key thing was even with the goal Ludden scored our delivery from free kicks and corners was brilliant.

“If we get good deliveries in, we have a chance of scoring, that is what we did. But overall it was unacceptable the way we played in the first half, we just hadn't been at the game.

“At half-time the lads got themselves ready, we started pressing high, winning the ball, and using the speed that we have in the team. So we were really good in the second half and it was a great win for us.”

United have enjoyed a blistering run of form since Caulfield took charge, and he remains firmly focused.

“We just need to take it a game at a time. There is potential in the team, there are great strengths within the team, that doesn't happen overnight,” Caulfield says. "Every week you have to work like that. In a lot of games we have done that; in others we haven't, but it is about consistency.”

 

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