Galway's Gavin Lee. Ben Brady/INPHO
Sunday Game

Canning: Galway's championship exit 'fairly depressing'

The former Galway star was speaking on The Sunday Game.

JOE CANNING DESCRIBED Galway’s championship exit as “fairly depressing” after Henry Shefflin’s side saw their summer ended by defeat to Dublin in Pearse Stadium yesterday.

Galway were beaten 2-27 to 1-24 by Micheál Donoghue’s Dublin, who can now look forward to a Leinster SHC final meeting with Kilkenny.

Speaking on The Sunday Game last night, former Galway star Canning reflected on a disappointing championship for Shefflin’s team.

“To be honest about it, it’s fairly depressing as a supporter and ex-player,” Canning said.

I know a lot of the guys obviously from playing with them over the last number of years. It’s not in a good place at the moment.

“They just never got going all year, throughout the league, fits and starts, but then in the championship, lucky to draw against Kilkenny. Kilkenny were missing a few of their top players. Then the sending-off against Antrim had a big bearing on it, they pulled away in that. Losing to Wexford, and then today (Dublin), it’s not good and they’ll be very disappointed with the year.

“When you’re comparing, you could see Dublin had a game plan. When you look at Galway, I’m not too sure. I couldn’t see how they were playing, how they were working the ball out, how they were feeding it into the forwards.

“There was no real structure as such, whereas with Dublin, you kind of knew. And other teams, you know – you know the way Limerick play, you know the way Clare play.”

Canning added that the addition of former Tipperary coach Eamon O’Shea to Shefflin’s coaching team may have been an issue this season.

“With Eamon and Henry… it’s two very contrasting styles. Eamon O’Shea is all about space, movement, with Tipperary the last number of years whereas Henry’s Kilkenny were more direct.

“Maybe it takes a little bit of time to bed into the players as well because maybe there’s different styles and trying to match that. It could take time.”

Anthony Daly highlighted last year’s Leinster final loss to Kilkenny as a major setback which possibly fed into this season.

“You’d have to kind of question the approach as well. I thought at the start of the year, they were my team to win the league,” Daly said.

“Why not go and win the league? But they seemed to have kind of a throwaway attitude towards the end of that, that there was bigger things to do. And look, they were very unlucky maybe in one way against Limerick two years ago. The Leinster final last year seems to have really ruined the momentum.

“It was just there for the winning, they didn’t get over the line and things have seemingly sunk after that. Whether they’re fully sunk, we won’t know.”

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