Galway United manager Shane Keegan cut a frustrated figure after watching his side huff and puff to a scoreless draw against Wexford FC at Ferrycarrig Park on Friday evening. The former Wexford boss was back on his old stomping ground for the first
Galway United manager Shane Keegan cut a frustrated figure after watching his side huff and puff to a scoreless draw against Wexford FC at Ferrycarrig Park on Friday evening.
The former Wexford boss was back on his old stomping ground for the first time since his departure to the west following the Youths' play-off defeat against Drogheda United two years ago, but he certainly didn't enjoy the return he would have hoped for.
“It was very, very frustrating. It looked from the first minute that it was only going to be a matter of time, but the more time went on the more it looked like we actually weren't going to score. You have to give Wexford their dues, in the last ten minutes they had arguably the two best chances of the game,” he said.
The Tribesmen enjoyed plenty of possession during the 90 minutes, but lacked a cutting edge in the final third and Keegan conceded that the hosts could well have sneaked a victory late on.
“We didn't create that many chances. Arguably our best chance came inside the first 60 seconds and after that we had all the ball and had them pinned in but they were comfortable enough. We were creating half-chances but you couldn't say we missed a sitter. They've had probably only two chances in the entire game, but they were two very good chances,” he said.
Galway have been on a poor run of late, only picking up one win in their last six games, but Keegan says promotion to the top flight is still within their sights if they can manage to get their act together.
“Tonight kind of sums up the way the first half of the season went for us. Promotion is still there to be achieved but we need a few reinforcements, that's for sure. We're just looking a little bit stale at the moment so we need to shake things up a bit over the course of the next two to three weeks. If we can do that and get a couple of personnel in we are capable of kicking on again and getting a groove going but it needs to happen sooner rather than later,” he said.
Having won the First Division with Wexford Youths in 2015, before guiding them against the big guns in the Premier Division the following season, the Slaneyside club will also hold a special place in Keegan's heart, and despite the dark cloud that hung over the manner of his departure he'll always cherish his time there.
“No matter what goes on in the next 30 or 40 years of my life, being involved with a team who were 66/1 at the start of the season to win a league title at our ease with two or three games left was a phenomenal year. Obviously enough I was a bit apprehensive about coming back this evening. I knew there wouldn't be a big number here, but still the same people I was very close to when I was down here were all still here and I really appreciate that they were all very nice and very welcoming,” he said.
He was fulsome in his praise for his former brother in arms Damian Locke and believes the Tralee native is doing a good job in trying circumstances as Wexford FC manager.
“It's a tough gig that Damian has got at the moment. I know just how tough it is, I did it for long enough. We had a couple of very successful seasons and we also had a very frustrating seasons. It can be very hard and can get on top of you. I think he's doing a fantastic job and people don't realise how much time and effort he's putting in and he's fully deserving of his point, if not more, tonight,” he said.