CORK CITY are back on top of the First Division table after a superb 1-0 win away to Galway on Friday night.
Matt Healy’s wonder strike in the 17th minute was enough to seal the win for Colin Healy’s side.
A massive three points for City on the road which put them back above John Caulfield’s Galway as they head into the mid-season break.
While it wasn’t the best spectacle, there was a fabulous atmosphere at Eamonn Deacy Park as the top two teams went head-to-head.
City finished the game with 10 men after the dismissal of Ruairí Keating with over 20 minutes to play, but credit to Healy’s men, who did well to manage the game and see it out to gain all three points.
There was a lively start to the game with the home side looking more dangerous. However, it was hard to believe it was a top-of-the-table clash with neither side playing much quality, attacking football.
They took time to settle into the game and it wasn’t until Healy scored, that City began to relax and look comfortable on the ball. And that only lasted for a small period of this half.
To be fair to City, they did just what they needed to do. Defended well and tried to create on the counterattack.
The home side finished the stronger in this half and could have had a penalty just before the break.
However, so too could have City if Cian Murphy had been a little cuter. While I don’t agree with players going down too easily, to be fair he did look to be tripped in the box but chose to stay on his feet, much to the annoyance of the travelling support.
The second half was much the same with neither side looking to play through the thirds.
City were happy to sit back and play on the counter-attack with long balls up top while Galway tried to pile the pressure on the visitors.
However, City were composed, defended strongly, and never panicked under pressure. With all Galway’s possession, they rarely threatened and while City had to work hard, finishing with 10 men, it never looked like they were going to lose.
So while this result was never going to dictate where the league title would go this season, it was important for City not to drop points and see the gap widen.
City will now have a break and league action will resume on June 10 when they face Waterford in Turner’s Cross.
Friday’s win against Galway will give them confidence for the remainder of the season and with players returning from injury, it can only make Healy’s side stronger which makes it an interesting next phase of the season.