League Report: Galway United 0 - 1 Wexford Youths

Ciara Rossiter on the ball during Wexford Youths' 5-2 win over Sligo Rovers on Saturday, 15 October 2022.

Ciara Rossiter scored the only goal of the game for Wexford Youths on Saturday. Credit: Hugh de Paor (ETPhotos)

Paul Corcoran reports from Eamonn Deacy Park

There was no perfect start for Galway United as they began life in the Women’s Premier Division with a 1-0 loss to Wexford Youths at Eamonn Deacy Park on Saturday afternoon.

Ciara Rossiter struck with ten minutes to go to give Youths the win on the opening day of the season.

Granted technically all of Galway United’s starting line-up were making their debuts for the club, all but two played for Galway WFC last season. The two new arrivals to Deacy Park for 2023 starting were Amy Madden and Gemma McGuinness.

There were some debutants for Stephen Quinn’s side with Emily Corbet and Abbie Brophy appearing for the first time after joining from Athlone Town and Bohemians during the offseason.

Rianna Jarrett was also in the starting line-up, the Republic of Ireland international making her first appearance for Wexford Youths since 2019 having re-joined the club after departing London City Lionesses.

Goalkeeper Abbiegayle Ronayne was called into action  a couple of times early on – Rianna Jarrett skipped through Galway’s defence in the fourth minute and was in on goal only for the shot stopper to meet the striker and make a great save.

Aoibheann Clancy dropped a lovely ball in from a corner kick minutes later and Ronayne again intervened in a crowded box to punch the ball away to safety.

The Tribeswomen had their first effort on goal after some great passages of play midway through the first half. Gemma McGuinness fancied her chances from long range with a high looping effort, but it fell into Maeve Williams arms.

Youths broke away dangerously in the 40th minute and some great link up play from Emily Corbet, Jarrett and Brophy nearly earned the visitors a goal, the final ball fell to Jarrett with the Galway defenders stretched her final shot was poor as she struck wide.

The home side had the ball in the net in the 42nd net after a great delivery by Jenna Slattery from a free-kick, she found the head of Jamie Erickson at the back post with her header looping over Williams into the net – the flag was up immediately for offside.

United very nearly took the lead in the 50th minute after some great play between Galway’s forward line, some great close control allowed McGuiness to get the ball to Abbie Callanan on the edge of the box but she fired wide.

Just minutes later Galway had a poor clearance from their own backline which only made it as far as Ciara Rossiter, the midfielder took aim from the edge of the box, but Ronayne was on hand to make another save for the home side.

Galway’s captain Lynsey McKey went close in the 58th minute, Nicola Sinnott blocked her initial shot on the edge of the box, but the ball fell to the forward for a second chance and her shot looked like would dip just under the crossbar only for it to sail inches over.

The visitors were being held to mostly long range efforts and Clancy struck from distance in the 61st minute with United’s goalkeeper making a good stop at her near post.

Ronayne was called into action again in the 77th minute when Jarrett nicked a through ball to Abbie Brophy, Ronayne raced off her line once again to deny the midfielder at close range.

Wexford made the breakthrough with just ten minutes to go – Galway had defended strongly all afternoon but a defensive tackle to strip a Jarrett of the ball fell in the path of Rossiter inside the box who stroked the ball into the bottom right corner.

The home side looked for a winner but it wasn’t on the cards as Youths held out for the three points.

Galway United Women: Abbiegayle Ronayne; Eve Dossen, Jamie Erickson, Therese Kinnevey, Amy Madden (Aoibheann Costello 80); Gemma McGuinness, Jenna Slattery, Kate Thompson; Abbie Callanan (Rola Olusola 72), Lynsey McKey, Aoife Thompson (Isabella Beletic 88).

Subs not used: Leah Brady, Roisin Jacob, Nicole McNamara, Kayla Brady, Jessica Berlin, Jodie Griffin.

Booked: Gemma McGuinness (86).

Wexford Youths Women: Maeve Williams; Orlaith Conlon, Meabh Russell, Nicola Sinnott; Abbie Brophy, Aoibheann Clancy, Michaela Lawrence (Freya DeMange 70), Kylie Murphy, Ciara Rossiter (Ceola Bergin 90); Emily Corbet (Orlaith Deasy 85), Rianna Jarrett.

Subs not used: Claudia Keenan, Louise Corrigan, Grace Fitzpatrick Ryan, Edel Kennedy, Shauna Carroll.

Booked: Michaela Lawrence (67).

Referee: Daniel Murphy.

extratime.com Player of the Match: Abbiegayle Ronayne (Galway United)