Galway United kicked-off the Premier Division campaign with a narrow loss against Derry City at Eamonn Deacy Park.
Sam Oji opened the scoring in the 19th minute when he powered home a header from a Ryan Connolly corner but Derry City struck back in the second half through Sean Houston and Ryan Curran to steal the points.
Tommy Dunne was disappointed at the softness of the goals conceded but he took positives from United’s first half performance.
“I think first half we were good, second half we were standing off too much compared to the first half.
“At 1-0, we didn’t look like we were going to concede or in any trouble and then we broke away and looked like we were causing Derry City problems.
“We looked a bit disjointed and they broke back at us in the same move, it should have been cleared when you see it again. It was just a couple of basic things that are soft in the end.
“That sort of changed the momentum of the game, up to that, I thought we were comfortable and still looking dangerous and in control but as the old cliche goes, goals change games and that’s what happened when they got the equaliser.”
Derry City’s equaliser seemed to shellshock United and Derry City attacked in wave after wave for a 10 minute period.
“It took us a bit of time to get ourselves settled down again and get moving again,” Dunne said.
“I thought we did get back into it and to be honest again it’s a soft enough goal from our point of view.
“We’ll have to tidy up on the defensive side of things, as we know at any level of football, if you’re not defensively right then it’s going to cause you problems.
“There were a few late additions that came into the group, when a club like ourselves are competing with the bigger boys for players then sometimes it takes that little bit longer.
“From my point of view, the majority of our group and especially the group that we had last year, they look strong, they look good, they look well capable for this division.
“We just need to get a couple of other bodies up to speed and up to the mark of what the Premier Division is and when we do that I think we’ll be fine.”
Looking ahead to Monday’s EA Sports Cup first round tie against Finn Harps at Eamonn Deacy Park, Dunne is expecting a trying test from Ollie Horgan’s side.
“Finn Harps are a strong outfit,” Dunne told www.galwayunitedfc.ie
“It will be a difficult outing for us in the League Cup but we want to do well in all competitions. We’ll have a look at the group and how they’ve come through tonight.
“We didn’t play a huge amount of pre-season games and that was for a reason because we’re a small enough group and the games are coming thick and fast so from that aspect the first couple of weeks will get you right up to speed and it’s not a sprint it’s a marathon.
“We know what we did last year but of course as you’re learning and you’re going through the learning curve you have to try to pick up results and that’s the harsh reality of the Premier Division where little basic things, and they were small things today, that cost us the game.
“Second half you could say they got the momentum, but only when they got the equaliser, I thought it was a 50/50 even more so ourselves, we were comfortable at 1-0 but again you give a team an opportunity to get back into the game, they’ll take it with two hands in the Premier Division.
“We went up the pitch, we could have made it 2-0 with a break, Ryan (Connolly) got on the endline and turned one back and next of all we didn’t take that chance and they go down the far end and it’s 1-1 and now the dynamic of the game completely changes.
“Last year we got this towards the end of the year, you don’t attack at the sacrifice of being loose and open at the back. We attack but we’re attacking with a good structure and we’re not leaving ourselves open if it does break down, we can defend the situation. One or two, stepped out position and it cost us.
“We’ll look at the physical aspect of the group after tonight’s game, we’ll train tomorrow, do a recovery session and we’ll train Sunday and make decisions from there then ahead of the Finn Harps game,” Dunne concluded.
NEXT MATCH: EA SPORTS CUP FIRST ROUND V FINN HARPS AT EAMONN DEACY PARK ON MONDAY, MARCH 9TH. KICK OFF: 7.45PM.