Joe Canning Galway's chief concern as summer looms

Micheál Donoghue believes Joe Canning should have been awarded a free before he picked up the injury that saw him stretchered off in the closing minutes of yesterday’s Allianz League semi-final.

The Galway manager speaking shortly after the game said: “he’s literally still being assessed by our medical team so until they determine what it is, we’ll be acting upon it once we know. I think it was his groin.

He took a few heavy hits on it and I’d be intrigued to watch it back and see the hits he got, or just before it.”

A tackle by Kevin Moran, which put Canning off balance in taking a shot, appeared to be what prompted the injury although Donoghue said there was a previous challenge which should have been punished: “There would be one in particular I’d be interested to see back. I’d like to see it back and I’d say it would be quite obvious (that it was a foul).”

Donoghue rued his team’s choices in the second half. “I was really happy with our application in the first half and I felt our decision-making didn’t help (after half-time). But ultimately we came here to try and win and get to a league final. Obviously we’re disappointed to have lost the game but we’ll just move from it now and look forward, and prepare for the Championship.”

His opposite number Páraic Fanning was pleased with how his team finished out the game despite losing Mikey Kearney to a second yellow card in the 55th minute. “It certainly wasn’t easy. It was heavy going. I didn’t realise it went on that long.

“The lads put in a massive shift and we had to. We’d to do one or two tweaks to our shape there to try to get over the line. But the lads implemented those changes brilliantly out there just to get us through it and they emptied everything out there.”

As for looking like they had more energy in them than Galway at the end, Fanning shrugged: “Sometimes when you have momentum it can look that way. We certainly got the bit between our teeth at that stage. We had just pushed ahead and in fairness we’ve shown we know how to close out the game. But we’ve trained well, we’ve had a great winter. We have a huge capacity to work and I think there’s more in them.”

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