Conor Melody 45' -
Paul Corcoran reports from Eamonn Deacy Park
Galway United caused a major upset in the second round of the FAI Cup beating Cork City 1-0 when they visited Eamonn Deacy Park on Friday night.
A goal from Conor Melody on the stroke of half time from a Stephen Christopher corner kick made the difference in a game which The Tribesmen appeared to dominate for large portions.
Early signs pointed to Galway United making the breakthrough as 15 minutes in Conor Melody had an excellent chance when he rattled a shot off after a great turn just outside the box. The ball was blocked by Cork bodies and ended up going behind.
Conor Barry seems to be coming into form after scoring in United’s 1-0 win over Cabinteely last week and he got a chance to put his side ahead with some decent foot work in the box but his rasping effort went wide of the Cork goal.
Mark O’Sullivan took on a mazy dribble towards the Galway goal midway through the first half and the striker could have grabbed a goal for himself but an excellent block by Stephen Walsh prevented the Cork player from challenging Kevin Horgan.
Moments later Walsh should have taken the lead for The Tribesmen after a great cross from Marc Ludden was left in the box by Melody at the behest of his captain. Walsh tried to volley the ball but the connection was poor and McNulty had no trouble gathering the ball into his chest.
Conor Barry too got in on the action again in the first half. Nugent received the ball just outside the box and the midfielder held on until Barry came free, a simple sideways pass allowed the forward to send a looping effort high towards goal but he only managed to hit the roof of the net.
Just before half time The Tribesmen won a corner after some great football by Donal Higgins. Stephen Christopher played the ball in from the flag and Conor Melody managed to get his head to it to nudge the ball over the line, sending the home fans into raptures.
Galway remained on top in the second half and with an hour gone they came close to doubling their lead. Conor Barry laid off a lovely ball to his right towards Donal Higgins and the young midfielder struck a great effort goalward with McNulty having to get right down on it to prevent the goal.
A great move in the 77th minute nearly put the game beyond doubt when Conor Barry slipped a lovely ball out wide to Donal Higgins. Higgins took the ball towards goal and dragged the ball back to Conor Melody but his effort was far too high to cause trouble.
Deep into injury time Cork had a chance to equalise but their free-kick routine didn’t pay off when Hurley smashed the ball at the wall, Chris Horgan was the first to react, clearing the ball.
Galway United: Kevin Horgan; Marc Ludden, Stephen Walsh, Jack Lynch, Killian Brouder (Cian Murphy, 84); Stephen Christopher, Joe Collins, Donal Higgins, Maurice Nugent (Christopher Horgan, 83), Conor Melody (Vinny Faherty, 84); Conor Barry.
Subs not used: Cian Mulryan, Colin Kelly, Wilson Waweru, Dara Costelloe.
Booked: Marc Ludden (82)
Cork City: Mark McNulty; Colm Horgan, Dan Casey, Kevin O’Connor (Karl Sheppard, 31), Conor McCarthy; Joel Coustrain (Shane Griffin, 45), Gearoid Morrissey, Garry Buckley, Ronan Hurley; Eoghan Stokes (Beineon O’Brien Whitmarsh, 75), Mark O’Sullivan.
Subs not used: Tadhg Ryan, Alan Bennett, Alec Byrne, Darragh Crowley.
Referee: Rob Rogers.
Extratime.ie Player of the Match: Conor Barry (Galway United)