Saturday 18 November 2017

Mayoman Murray aiming for weekend of celebration

Ronan Murray with the Player of the Month award for August. Photo: Ray McManus/Sportsfile
Ronan Murray with the Player of the Month award for August. Photo: Ray McManus/Sportsfile

John Fallon

In a huge weekend for Mayo, Belmullet native Ronan Murray is more interested in securing the Premier Division status of Galway United.

The striker is hopeful of snaffling a ticket for Sunday's All-Ireland final between his home county and Dublin but his mood at Croke Park could well be influenced by the outcome of tonight's meeting with Derry City.

Galway have been immersed in the crowded relegation dogfight this year, occupying the second-from-bottom berth four points off safety. Since Murray's brace helped them win a crucial game against Finn Harps six weeks ago, the Tribesmen have collected just a point and badly need a result at Eamonn Deacy Park this evening.

Murray, who turned 26 on Tuesday, was yesterday named the SSE Airtricity/Soccer Writers' Association of Ireland (SWAI) Player of the Month for August but personal accolades alone won't keep them in the top flight.

"Maybe it was naivety, trying to play in the wrong places at the wrong time, and that has killed us," reasoned Murray about their predicament. "It's all about getting results from here on in and whether we play the best football in the world or the worst, it doesn't matter once we win games."

His county have the same idea in mind as they look to end their All-Ireland drought on Sunday and Murray might have been part of their set-up had cross-channel interest not surfaced.

"Where I'm from in Belmullet, it's very rural and other than the beautiful views and the times we get nice weather, sport is the focal point for everyone," he explained.

"Whether it's a sliotar, a football or a soccer ball, you pick it up to play and that's what I did. I played GAA for Belmullet until I was 15 when I made the choice to join Ipswich."

Irish Independent

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