Now is the time United must 'perform and deliver'

Galway United entertain the only side to which they lost in this season's SSE Airtricity League first division when Longford Town visit Eamonn Deacy Park tomorrow night (7.45pm ).

United were in imperious form prior to the mid-season interval, but manager John Caulfield is confident the break is a positive for his group.

"It gets to that point of the season, where, though we had a great start, we had a few injuries," he says. "I just feel sometimes the week away is good for everyone to get a bit of time to themselves.

"We have had a very good first half of the season. But there is a lot of noise and nonsense. There are 17 games left in the season. Everyone knows that from now on we must perform and deliver."

United will have the advantage of playing at home in their next two league games, which is a positive says Caulfield.

"The fact you don't have to travel is handy. Having your first two games at home after a break is good.'

The first of these games will pit United against the only team to have beaten them this season and that should help to concentrate the mind as they prepare for an otherwise inconsistent Longford side.

"They are a club that have caused us problems in the last number of years. Against the top two teams they have achieved tremendous results. We found it really difficult in Terryland earlier in the season. They raise their game against the bigger sides.'

It is a challenge that United will face in good health. After a great start to the season where they could field a settled side, in recent weeks the pack has been shuffled consistently due to injuries and suspensions.

However, Caulfield is pleased with the return of key operators ahead of Friday's clash.

"The week off was good for Conor McCormack as he has been carrying a knock. Ronan Manning and Colm Horgan are nearly back. Killian Brouder comes back from the suspension. It looks like we will have more or less a full panel to pick from which is encouraging."

Seamless squad rotation has been a feature of United's success in the early part of the season. Another challenge also exists with the July transfer window opening next week, and Caulfield says this causes a dilemma.

"One or two of our lads have expressed an interest in going out and trying to get more [playing] time. That is understandable and it is difficult in a competitive panel. You need to help them out because their careers are short.

"We think that 99% of the squad will stay as is because we are very happy with it. We will probably bring in one player."


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