Shane Stapleton reports from Croke Park as Galway beat Wexford 1-27 to 0-17, with Conor Whelan and Brian Concannon in terrific form for the Tribal County.
Davy Fitzgerald cut a depressed figure after Galway’s 13-point victory over Wexford at Croke Park.
The Tribe announced themselves as serious All-Ireland contenders with this performance, and Conor Whelan proved again what a menace he is.
The Kinvara man’s power put Galway on the front foot throughout the clash, and that was one of the defining factors here.
In one-on-one situations, far more men in maroon (via white jerseys) had the beating of their men than the opposition.
Brian Concannon has the makings of a new star, Fintan Burke soared for a couple of exceptional high balls, while Padraic Mannion continues to lead.
All had looked well enough for the Models after 22 minutes when Paul Morris levelled the game at 0-8 apiece.
There was no sign of the collapse to come, which was kickstarted by a run of 1-4 to naught in the following six minutes.
Mark Fanning will know he should have called for the ball to be let through to him from a long free, rather than jump into a crowd.
Concannon was quickest to the break, and at 1-12 to 0-8 it felt like lights out.
Yes, Matt O’Hanlon should have netted on 32 minutes and that would have closed the gap significantly, but perhaps merely delayed the inevitable too.
Galway have myriad threats. The directness of Concannon and Whelan, the speed of Jason Flynn, the gliding of Cathal Mannion, not the guile and aerial ability of Joe Canning.
Galway won an All-Ireland just three years ago, and many of those players are still at their peak.
They have added some fresh blood, there is a versatility to their players, Daithi Burke (injured) and his namesake Davy may yet come into the fold.
All is looking well with the Tribe.
📮 Sign up to the OurGame newsletter — a daily email reminder of our latest videos, articles, quizzes and more.
Don’t forget to subscribe to the OurGame YouTube page for live streams and more.