Short chat with Brian from the supporters group, the Maroon Army
My name is Brian and I am involved with the maroon army and we are around for the last couple of seasons now, basically we are just trying to improve the atmosphere at games, trying to have displays, but most of all its just try to get a better atmosphere at the games, and try, including away games as well, try to get more support going to away games and we have seen an increase in away games as well.
What would you say is the size of the group, is it getting bigger all the time?
It’s getting bigger all the time, it depends on the home game, but for the last couple of games, at home and towards the end of last season there was certainly a big group I’d say maybe 150, 200 ,and it’s always increasing, especially for away games as well
What got you into supporting Galway united, because a lot of young fellas don’t think of the LOI?
Well I’m a supporter now for 15 odd years, or more, it was actually when I was at school the manager at the time Don O’Riordan came to the school and they were handing out free tickets for the next home game and I went along and I was hooked. And I supported a bit of English football as well but to be honest I had more affiliation with my home team and just more passion and because I am from Galway, and Galway city, it means just a lot more to me
I was going to ask what’s the best season in those years, but of course this is a new Galway team!!
It is a new Galway team but it still is for the majority of the supporters it still always been Galway United, we fought to keep it there, the name change, obviously they were gone for a few years, but we always treated it as Galway united, and the name was still there and eventually it just came back in. so to be honest for most supporters it’s always been there, and a lot of people have worked to keep the name there.
Did you get worried that those 1 or 2 or 3 years that it looked like there would be no team…
Yeah there was definitely a lot of concern, certainly there was a few local teams like Mervue and Salthill that participated in the LOi , but for a lot of people because they are just suburbs of Galway city , I am not from Mervue or Salthill so they have nothing to do with me really, so yeah there was definitely concern that they wouldn’t come back but there was a lot of hard work from people behind the scenes that kept it going.
So its good to be back
Oh it’s great to be back
In those years that you have been following, what has been the highlight for you?
Mm I mean…..
Not a lot of success…
There is not a lot of success, there certainly hasn’t been many trophies in my time. I just came onto the fold just after they won the league cup in 1997, which was our last trophy. We had a couple of good games like where we had relegation play offs, and things like that
I suppose one that lives in the memory was when we played away to UCd and we beat them 1-0 and it kept us up for the season
That’s online, the video
Online yeah, and Jeff Kenna was in charge, there was just a real good feel around the club at that time we had about 700 or 800 travel up from Galway for that game
Were you at that game?
The atmosphere at that game looks amazing
Yeah it was really amazing, just around at that time things seemed like they were picking up but Jeff Kenna left then so….
He didn’t really go anywhere but that moment in time it certainly felt that there was a lot there to work on
But you are getting off to a good start this season
Yeah we look very strong this season I have to say, strongest squad in a few years I think we will be top 5 or 6 this season I reckon, we look at lot stronger and fitter and he has brought in more players and more bodies
Overall there is a good squad there, and if we are missing a couple of players I don’t think we will be stuck, we have a good depth in the squad
And 1 or 2 players to look out for?
Yeah John Sullivan came from Bray, he looks very, very good, real strong holding midfielder, which I think we were missing last season, and
Bray miss him this season
Yeah Bray are missing him by the look of things as well,
Stephen Folan returns to Galway, he hasn’t played for Galway united before, but he is a good Galway city man, and he looks very, very strong at the back
There is a good spine to the team
And if you are looking for a younger player Pauric Cunningham, striker from Hedford, scored a hat trick there against Mayo League in the league cup during the week, and he looks like a guy with a lot of potential, I think he possibly could start today against Bohs, and I wouldn’t bet against him scoring against them either.
So what about today’s game then?
I think we will beat Bohs, I think it will be tough, Bohs have had a poor start, they won during the week, in the league cup though, so they probably have a little more confidence though, and they have couple of players back, I know Anto Murphy is back for them, he is a strong player for them, I think it will be tight but I think Galway united will be good enough tonight
What’s your prediction for tonight?
I reckon 2-1
What would you consider rivals to Galway United?
Sligo Rovers would be the biggest rivals I suppose, I mean the Connaught derby for us is a big game, Athlone used to be, whenever we play them, it’s because they are, I think they probably are the nearest club, to us, nearer than Sligo or limerick
Even with Longford there is a bit of a rivalry there, even though they are a bit away
You have to say that, poor old Longford!
Who would you consider Cult hero?
For me Billy Cleary would be my cult hero, he is from the Claddagh, a good Galway man, he was a just gun-ho kind of solid defender, no one would get past him really, he had a bit of a reputation for been in refs ears and stuff like that but he was always a solid player
And if you had something to say to people that are in Galway who are not quite sure about hoping upto Terry land what would you say to them?
I’d say if you are anyway interested in football you should be making your way upto Eamon Deasy Park at the moment
So they changed the name?
Yes it used to be Terryland park, its Eamon Deasy Park now, because Eamonn Deasy I don’t know if you have heard of him would have been a Galway united legend, he played for Aston Villa, he passed away a couple of years ago, so they changed the name of the park a few years ago
They deserve their support, there is a good solid structure up there now, good team, good manager, and as well as that there is a good atmosphere, it’s a bit of banter even if you’re not enjoying the football, there is a bit of crack to be had, you know Friday evenings what else would you be at you know!
It’s a good place to be, a good atmosphere and you get to know a lot of people from different backgrounds, with different politics ,different you know, I think you go will go up there I think you will learn something more than anything
What will I learn today?
Today you will learn that Galway United could possible win the league this year, ha!
You never know, you never know
Ok thanks Brian
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