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Galway manager Kevin Walsh (r) congratulates Dublin manager Jim Gavin after the All-Ireland SFC semi-final. 
Galway manager Kevin Walsh (r) congratulates Dublin manager Jim Gavin after the All-Ireland SFC semi-final. 

Kevin Walsh: 'Dublin are ahead of the chasing pack'

By John Harrington

Galway manager Kevin Walsh admits every other team in the country is struggling to play catch-up with a Dublin side that’s now just one win away from a fourth All-Ireland in a row.

After competing well for the first half his Galway side were outclassed in the second as Dublin powered to a nine-point victory in today’s All-Ireland SFC semi-final.

When it was put to Walsh after the match that Dublin are out on their own, he didn’t dispute the theory.

“It looks that way at the minute,” he said. “They are highly experienced, they probably get stronger as the summer goes on, and they have a huge panel and they know each other inside out so it’s up to ourselves and everyone else to close the gap.

“When we look at this at the end of the year, I keep talking about end of year accounts, we’ll look at ourselves to see if we have made progress or not, and if we can keep closing the gap on the tops teams that what we have tried to do up to today.

“I just said to the boys there you never know who will be in the dressing room next year, things change all the time, so we’ll look at ourselves and see what we have achieved.”

Galway played some good football in the first half but were guilty of some costly misses too, most notably Eamonn Brannigan’s penalty that was brilliantly saved by Stephen Cluxton.

Walsh admitted his team’s inability to consistently take the chances that came their way hurt them.

“Obviously we were two down at half-time and probably should have been leading at half time,” he said.

“Playing a team the quality of Dublin and not to put your chances away probably put us under pressure and then one or two early scores after half time.

“Once that happened we were on the back foot.

“We don’t need to make excuses it’s about experience.

“I think that dressing room is 24 or 25 on average age so if they want to as a group to push on they will have to experience these types of games and what was important we were competitive in the first half.”

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