Have The Dubs Missed A Trick?
Dublin were supported to send Galway into the All-Ireland qualifiers but their failure to kick for home effectively having turned the final bend marginally in front may concern manager Ger Cunningham as the sides meet again, this time in O’Connor Park, Tullamore, on Saturday evening.
Just when it seemed Dublin were on the verge of putting their foot on the accelerator in the final quarter they instead hit the brakes allowing the Tribesmen sufficient oxygen to force a Leinster SHC quarter-final replay.
It was thought that the Metropolitans had learned lessons from their affording Cork an opportunity at overturning what appeared to be an insurmountable deficit in the National Hurling League Division 1 semi-final.
Yet, the Boys in Blue also failed to take the contest at headquarters by the scruff of the neck against the westerners when the chance presented itself.
Will Dublin rue such a missed opportunity?
BoyleSports rate Ger Cunningham’s men as the slightest of slight favourites at even-money to win the replay while Galway are 11/10.
The possibility of a second draw is an 8/1 chance but replays rarely follow a similar path to that of the first meeting of any pairing.
Galway’s use of possession
In the initial encounter, Galway engineered a scoring opportunity once in every 3.4 possessions on average as against Dublin’s one in every 4.8 possessions.
However, that does not tell the full story of how potentially devastating Galway could have been in attack with a little more composure.
Remarkably, even though the Tribesmen had 44 less possessions than the Metropolitans Galway actually managed to create two more scoring opportunities, with 37, than Dublin did in the provincial match-up.
With those numbers in mind, and the fact their boss Anthony Cunningham is convinced the westerners will come on for last Sunday’s run, Galway could be more astute in possession in front of Dublin’s posts in Offaly.
There was a total number of 40 points generated by the two teams last Sunday.
Yet, it may be that this particular clash is even higher scoring despite the tighter venue confines.
Joseph Cooney scored the only major of the game in Croke Park but Galway created a number of goalscoring opportunities that were wasted previously.
However, the Tribesmen are worth backing at 10/11 to score over 1.5 goals in the replay as a more efficient attacking performance is expected from Anthony Cunningham’s side.
A further six days of recovery time for Joe Canning will not have gone amiss too as he nurses a hand injury and Cyril Donnellan is likely to build on an impressive offensive display last weekend.
Galway should take to the field with greater confidence and can rattle Dublin’s defence.
Additionally, a supplementary punt on BoyleSports’ total number of match points at 44.5 being surpassed at 4/5 is advised.
As illustrated, there was 40 points on the board in the first game with both sides having struck 28-plus wides between them and with improved performances anticipated from both parties a thriller could develop in O’Connor Park.