Galway United 6 Bray Wanderers 0
Three goals in each half saw Bray go down at Eamonn Deacy Park in the top of the table SSE Airtricity Men’s First Division clash on Friday.
Galway maintained their 100% winning start with a ninth straight victory which saw Wanderers suffer only their second loss of the campaign.
There was positives though.
Club captain Dave Webster made his football return after a year out with injury.
And his first Wanderers appearance in 3082 days in what his second spell at the club.
Not to be outdone, Darren Craven also returned in league action after injury – after 50 weeks out – with the midfielder coming on as a second half substitute. He hadn’t featured in the Division since April back in 2022.
There was two changes top the starting line-up who’d beaten Athlone Town last week.
Goalkeeper Alex Moody returned after suspension with Jake Walker restored to the attack.
United hit the front after just ten minutes. Conor McCormack’s corner from the left went deep to the back post. Conor O’ Keefe gathered and sent over a cross which found Killian Brouder who header dropped back across goal to the net.
The hosts doubled that advantage in the 22nd minute. A free went long to the right were Edward McCarthy worked the ball to Vincent Borden who span off a tackle just inside the box to drill in low from 16-yards.
Ben Feeney headed wide on 23. Two minutes later, Feeney turned provider, but Brendan Clarke smothered Walker’s header.
On the half hour, Dane Massey was harshly adjudged to have handled when it appeared ball to arm. David Hurley converted the resulting penalty.
Despite the 3-0 deficit, Wanderers continued to impress going forward after the interval.
They had chances with Chris Lyons, Craven and Guillermo Almirall all going close.
Their best opportunity came in the 65th minute when Almirall crossed from the left wing and home defender Rob Slevin nearly turned the ball into his own net. Brendan Clarke saved brilliantly.
The custodian then immediately spread play downfield. Despite a hint of offside, Walsh laid the ball back for Borden to fire in low from the edge of the box.
The Tribesmen registered a fifth score in the 73rd minute. Moody was deemed to have fouled Walsh in the penalty with substitute Mickie Rowe slotting in the spot-kick.
With six minutes or normal time remaining, Borden got free off the right flank despite a strong hint of offside. He centred for sub Ibrahim Keita to hook a half volley to the far left corner of the net.
Galway United: Brendan Clarke; Colm Horgan, Robert Slevin, Killian Brouder, Conor O’Keeffe; Vincent Borden, Conor McCormack (Maurice Nugent 69); Edward McCarthy (Steven Healy 76), David Hurley (Michael McCullagh 76), Francely Lomboto (Mickie Rowe 55); Stephen Walsh (Ibrahim Keita 76).
Subs not used: Robert Manley, Alex Rutter, Evan O’Connor, Darren Clarke.
Booked: McCormack 35.
Bray Wanderers: Alex Moody; Jack Hudson (David Webster half time), Cole Omorehiomwan, Dane Massey, Max Murphy; Luka Lovic, Harry Groome (Darren Craven 51) Guillermo Almirall; Jake Walker (Conor Knight 84), Chris Lyons (Ger Shortt 74), Ben Feeney.
Subs not used: Callum Thompson, Lorcan Fitzgerald, Zach Donohue, Stephen McGuinness.
Booked: Lovic 27, Massey 29, Moody 73, Webster 85.
Referee: Paul Norton.
Pictures: Gerry Scully.