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Down resilience can yield home victory, insists McCorry

By John Campbell

Most team managers have due cause for hoping that the majority of their Allianz Football League games are at home.

Down boss Jim McCorry, though, might have grounds for thinking otherwise. His team have thrived on the road since the outset of the competition but are still looking for their first home victory.

Having claimed the scalps of Kildare and Cavan, McCorry's men will face unbeaten Galway at Newry on Saturday night anxious to break their home duck but with the manager convinced that their new-found resilience and character might prove an indication of better things to come on their own soil.

"In both our away games to date we finished strongly and that was particularly pleasing," reflects McCorry.

"We didn't think it was going to be our night on Saturday against Cavan when we had two players injured early on but the most pleasing aspect was the guts we showed after that.

"We also missed some easy scores in the opening quarter but we did not let that get to us. The lads could have dropped their heads but instead they rolled up their sleeves and responded with courage and character."

In their only home game so far, Down were defeated by Roscommon and now McCorry is keen to avoid a second helping of ignominy from a Connacht side on Saturday.

Galway were left kicking their heels last Sunday when their match against Laois was ruled out because of snow and McCorry believes they will be particularly keen to make up for lost time at Pairc Esler, Newry.

Darren O'Hagan and Brendan McArdle were the players forced to retire in the early stages against Cavan but McCorry sprung Rory Boyle and Gerard Collins from the bench to good effect.

Galway look certain to be without their influential midfield ace Thomas Flynn but manager Kevin Walsh deployed his substitutes well in the wins over Meath (2-13 to 1-12) and Westmeath (2-13 to 2-12) and would appear to have strength in depth.

Patrick Sweeney, Shane Walsh, Paul Varley and Danny Cummins are players capable of posing problems for the Down defence while the experienced Gareth Bradshaw continues to hold the defence together.

Belfast Telegraph

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