MATCH REPORT: Longford Town 1-0 Galway United (First Division)
Galway United’s incredible 11 game winning run came to an end at Bishopsgate as the Tribesmen fell to a 1-0 defeat against Longford Town on Monday night.
The only goal of the game came after just three minutes as Mohammed Boudiaf‘s right-footed strike flew across goal and into the far bottom corner and the hosts held on to secure all three points and their second win of the campaign.
United made two changes to their lineup as captain Conor McCormack and Maurice Nugent returned to the side in place of Conor O’Keeffe and Regan Donelon.
United started the game brightly as David Hurley took on the Longford defence and cut inside from the right before striking low but Jack Brady got down well to make an exceptional save to keep the scores level with only two minutes played.
The hosts went down the other end and found the opener as Mohammed Boudiaf dug out a shot from the edge of the area which evaded everybody and nestled into the bottom corner to give Longford an early lead.
The visitors weathered the Longford storm for the next couple of minutes, as Viktor Serdenyuk came closest to doubling the lead in this period when he struck a volley from the edge of the box which went just wide of the post.
Ed McCarthy fashioned an opportunity for himself as he so often does, as he drove down the right wing before forcing another great save from Brady in the Longford goal.
Just a minute later, McCarthy launched a long throw into the box which was met powerfully by Rob Slevin whose header was saved brilliantly once again by Brady.
Slevin was causing problems for the opposition defenders once again as with 17 minutes played, he rose highest but his header looped over the crossbar.
Five minutes before the half time whistle, a McCarthy long throw in was flicked on by Killian Brouder into the path of Stephen Walsh, but his header also went over the crossbar.
John Caulfield made a change at half time in the hopes of finding an equaliser as he replaced Francely Lomboto with striker Ibrahim Keita.
The opening couple of minutes of the second half saw Walsh find himself in behind the Longford defence, but his pass was intercepted just as he looked to square the ball to McCarthy for what would have been a tap-in.
The hosts stood strong against all the United advances with some great defending on display as Shane Elworthy just headed the ball away from the onrushing Nugent at the back post with 49 minutes on the clock.
The biggest chance of the half for the visitors came with 20 minutes left to play when Hurley whipped in a dangerous free kick and Walsh met it superbly at the front post with an acrobatic overhead kick which rattled the crossbar and bounced out before Nugent’s rebound was saved on the line by Brady.
United introduced more attacking talent in an attempt tosnatch an equaliser with Darren Clarke, Mikie Rowe, and Rob Manley entering the fray throughout the second half.
Two substitutes combined with 10 minutes remaining as Clarke ran down the right ring, beat his man, and crossed to Keita but his shot went just wide of the post.
Longford Town almost doubled their lead in stoppage time as Jamal Ibrahim was bearing down on goal on the counter-attack, but Brendan Clarke made a great stop to deny the hosts their second.
The full time whistle sounded and United suffered their first defeat of the season after a magical 11-game winning streak. With the loss, United remain seven points clear at the top of the table.
Longford Town: J. Brady, S. Elworthy, A. Vernon, C. Byrne, K. O’Connor, V. Serdenyuk, A. Dervin, M. Boudiaf (J. Giurgi 24’), J. Ibrahim, G. Armstrong (E. Farrell 75’), S. Meaney (E. James 75’).
Galway United: B. Clarke, M. Nugent, K. Brouder, R. Slevin, C. Horgan (C. O’Keeffe 37’), F. Lomboto (I. Keita 46’), C. McCormack (D. Clarke 66’), V. Borden (M. Rowe 66’), E. McCarthy (R. Manley 80’), D. Hurley, S. Walsh.
Next up, Galway United return to Eamonn Deacy Park to take on second placed Waterford on Friday May 5th, kick off is at 7:45pm.
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