Cork City must up their intensity to stay ahead of Galway United

Rebel Army are away to in-form Wexford as they try to maintain their narrow lead in the First Division
Cork City must up their intensity to stay ahead of Galway United

Cork City's Cian Bargary heads past Galway United's Conor O'Keeffe at Turner's Cross. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

CORK City travel to Ferrycarrig to take on sixth place Wexford in the SSE Airtricity First Division.

It's a fixture where you would expect the leaders to take all three points but it won’t be easy.

A mixture of some dull performances from City, coupled with the fact that Wexford are on a great run, seven wins from seven, will put the Rebel Army on red alert. 

City come in on the back of a 0-0 draw against chasers Galway while Wexford’s last game a fortnight ago was a superb 3-1 win against Waterford.

After the Galway stalemate, I wrote about my disappointment with the City's style: too much passing sideways and backwards and not enough attacking threat. If this continues against a physical and pacy side, City could be under huge pressure.

Cork City's Ruairi Keating wins the ball from Galway United's James Finnerty. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Cork City's Ruairi Keating wins the ball from Galway United's James Finnerty. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Wexford are currently in the hunt for a playoff place. They cut the gap to Longford Town in fourth to three points, ahead of Treaty United on goal difference. There’s no doubt Ian Ryan’s men will be well up for the game in front of their home crowd.

There has been very little between the sides this season. The last time the sides met in Ferrycarrig, a header from Cian Murphy was all that separated the sides and in fact, it was Wexford who dominated for most of that game. Colin Healy knows it will be a difficult game but stated at the press conference he is pleased with how his side are going.

“I am happy with how we’re performing but we know we can always do better of course.

“At the moment we are just focusing on game by game. There is still plenty of games to go in the league so although we’re on top, we are not complacent and we know tonight will be another tough encounter. 

"Wexford have a good manager and team and we never get anything easy up there and I expect the same tonight. The lads trained hard again this week which was difficult in the hot weather however we did adjust training times to make it that little bit easier, and let’s hope that will stand to the lads tonight. 

"The aim is to get three points after a disappointing draw last week.”

Second place Galway will play bottom of the table Athlone so that just puts more pressure on City to secure the win to keep the gap at the top. I felt they left last week's game behind them in the sense that, playing against a 10-man Galway for 75 minutes, they really should have done better especially in front of their home crowd of over 6,000.

City should have a strong squad again to choose but I imagine they will have to do without the service of centre-half Ally Gilchrist who was substituted last week on his return from a hamstring injury. 

Cork City's goalkeeper David Harrington saves from Galway United's Rob Manley. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Cork City's goalkeeper David Harrington saves from Galway United's Rob Manley. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Goalkeeper David Harrington came off injured against Galway but I don’t think it was as bad as first expected. If he's not fit I’m confident with Jimmy Corcoran between the posts. 

He did well last week when he was introduced and I think it would be great for him to get his first start of the season.

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