Henry Shefflin reflects on ‘average’ first year in charge of Galway

Henry Shefflin

Henry Shefflin has given a blunt assessment of his first year in charge of Galway’s senior hurlers, stressing that the team must improve.

Galway enjoyed some success in 2022 but fell short of winning any silverware, as they missed out on the semi-finals of the Allianz League, were beaten in the Leinster Championship final and suffered defeat in an All-Ireland semi-final.

The only teams that beat Galway in this year’s championship were All-Ireland finalists Limerick and Kilkenny, although Shefflin is taking little comfort in that fact.

Speaking to GAA.ie, Shefflin admitted he was largely unimpressed with his first season in charge of Galway and laid out what the team must do better next year.

Henry Shefflin on Galway’s 2022.

“We’re looking for silverware. Did we get any? No we didn’t,” Shefflin said.

“We ended up okay in the Walsh Cup, we ended up okay in the league, we did okay in the Leinster Championship, flat performance in the final, flashes of good play in the quarter-final and semi-final.

“Was there a consistent 75-minute performance? Probably not. Average. We need to do better if we are going to get to the stage where you have silverware in front of you.

“How do you get there? By basically developing the panel a little, getting more out of the substitutes and new players coming in. That’s what we are going to try to do, open up the panel a little bit, try to find a few new players, that’s what we need.”

The Tribesmen are on the way up.

While Galway didn’t win any silverware in 2022, they did perform significantly better in this year’s championship compared to last year.

In 2021, Galway were beaten by Dublin in the Leinster Championship before their season was ended in a loss to Clare in an All-Ireland qualifier, after which the county’s greatest ever player Joe Canning announced his retirement.

Many expected Galway to go through a period of transition when Shefflin first came in, although the Tribesmen fared very well in their first year under the Kilkenny great and look set to continue improving.

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