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“I was loving it” — Finnerty on Armagh peno drama

Rob Finnerty chats about all things Galway, hitting a penalty under pressure, and takes our Q&A with Shane Stapleton

Rob Finnerty chats about all things Galway, hitting a penalty under pressure, and takes our Q&A with Shane Stapleton.

Robert Finnerty was embracing the atmosphere as he stepped up to take his kick in the 2022 penalty shootout against Armagh.

Galway and the Orchard County could not be separated after extra time of a fractious encounter, and so it went to a dramatic finale at Croke Park.

Galway were impressive with their spot-kicks, while Armagh found the going tough as they bowed out of the championship at the quarter-final stage.

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Given the huge crowd and raucous noise in the stadium, a player could be forgiven for clamming up in that moment.

“To be honest, I was loving it, like,” says Finnerty. “They were rising the crowd.

“You could see (goalkeeper Ethan) Rafferty was throwing the hands up to get the crowd behind them and they were getting louder and louder, so look it was enjoyable.

“Obviously I would have taken penalties all my life with my club (Salthill Knocknacarra) and things like that, so I was confident enough going up that I would slot it. It was a great feeling.”

As host Shane Stapleton put it to Finnerty, “with the quality of penalties ye produced, you would swear ye were practicing day in and day out.”

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“To be fair, we actually were practicing day in and day out because there’s a lot of competition between us,” says the inside forward.

“We’d be all kind of fancying ourselves to take penos. Matty Tierney, Shane Walsh, Damien Comer, myself — the four of us.

“We didn’t really know how the fifth was going to be, but then Kieran Molloy fancied himself so, look,” Finnerty chuckles, “I’ll say this, I’m happy it didn’t go down to the fifth penalty anyway, that’s all I’ll say!”

“Rafferty went the right way (with my penalty) and got a tiny bit of a hand to it, but I went high and he went down to his right, but it was more top left.”

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Finnerty also speaks about his dad Anthony, the former Mayo star, and how he has been converted to a Tribal County follower.

Also up for discussion is being managed at club level by John O’Mahony, a fun Q&A, a league final against Mayo, and the journey to the All-Ireland final in 2022.

Optimum Nutrition®, the world’s number 1 sports nutrition brand[1], and part of the Glanbia Performance Nutrition brand family, has today been unveiled as the Official Performance Nutrition Partner of the Gaelic Players Association (GPA) in a new three-year partnership.
Through the new partnership, Optimum Nutrition® will provide its Elite Series product range of certified high quality performance nutrition products to adult players and counties nationwide through an online portal.
Optimum Nutrition® will also support the education of players on the importance of eating a nutritious diet along with appropriate high quality sports nutrition products to provide performance benefits throughout the season. The launch today was attended by Meath footballing ace, Emma Duggan, Kilkenny All-Star Michelle Teehan, Limerick hurling star, Sean Finn and Galway sharpshooter Robert Finnerty.
Optimum Nutrition has been trusted by all types of athletes for over 35 years and has fuelled billions of workouts in that time. To mark the launch of the partnership, Optimum Nutrition® is giving Gaelic clubs across Ireland the opportunity to win a top prize of state-of-the-art gym equipment, along with a year’s supply of Optimum Nutrition® product worth €25,000. The runner-up in the giveaway will win a year’s supply of Optimum Nutrition® product for their club worth €5,000 to further their training and performance goals. Visit or @optimumnutrition_ie on Instagram for more information.

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