By Cian O’Connell for gaa.ie
Diarmuid Murtagh acknowledges Roscommon had one main aim at the start of the year.
Reaching a Connacht Senior Football Championship Final was the objective. Roscommon operated at that stage 12 months ago before being beaten by Galway in a replay.
Now Roscommon have an opportunity for revenge at Pearse Stadium on Sunday. “It’s lovely, our aim was to get back to a Connacht Final, whether that was Mayo or Galway,” Murtagh, the talented inside forward, says.
“We haven’t beaten either of them in so many years, so it’s nice to get another crack at them definitely.”
Murtagh has been impressed by the manner in which Galway have progressed. “They have been trying to get promoted from Division 2 for the last few years and this year they got it,” Murtagh states. “They seem to playing really well to a system of play.
“Any team that beats Mayo, who are regarded as the top two in the country, they are obviously doing something right. They are definitely doing very well, Galway.”
Injured for the 2016 clashes between the teams, Murtagh has never played against Galway in the Connacht Championship.
“Last year I was injured for the Connacht finals, both Connacht finals, so I haven’t played against them.
“But by looking at them they retreat very fast, but they are also able to get forward very fast which is a big thing with teams.
“You’d often hear the lads on The Sunday Game talking about the best teams in the country, they are the once who can transition the ball from defence to the forwards the quickest. Galway are certainly working hard at that.”
St Faithleach’s clubman Murtagh, one of three brothers involved, says there is a good, positive bond in Kevin McStay’s panel.
“We have a lot of young lads in the team – even with the older lads we are all great together and we all get on,” Murtagh remarks.
“A lot of us work in town and we go to lunch together, we do everything together you’d nearly see these lads more than my family. We get on great. It’s a very happy camp.”