GALWAY GAA: (Reaction) – “I suppose It’s a big learning curve” – KEVIN WALSH 

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Their first season back in the top flight of league football resulted in a Croke Park final appearance and Galway football supporters weren’t too despondent after falling short to Dublin.

Three late scores finally ensured the All-Ireland champions won their fifth title in six seasons and maintained their position as favourites heading into the summer.

“It’s one of disappointment with the result, obviously,” said Walsh to assembled media after Sunday’s game.  “But, overall, taking everything into account, I suppose it’s a big learning curve for the team.”

“They’re disappointed we gave away a few late points, but, overall, for a team that I think with maybe five of those who started haven’t kicked a championship ball yet, it was important for us to see how they would react at headquarters.”

Despite the defeat, Walsh was happy enough with his team’s efforts as all attention now turns towards MacHale Park, Castlebar in six weeks and another joust with rivals Mayo.

“Overall, happy enough performance-wise,” added the 1998 and 2001 All-Ireland winner.  “A few things in there we’ll have to improve on. But, overall, disappointed to lose.

“We haven’t even thought of Mayo this week. This was totally about getting ready for Dublin this week, but I’m sure while we’re thinking about this they’re getting the troops together so it’s going to be a heavy five weeks.

“It was important we were there coming up the stretch. We gave away a few late points, but we learned a lot overall. I think five of those lads haven’t kicked a championship ball yet, so it was important for us to see how they would react at headquarters.”

“You see lots of games where 14 beat 15, especially when it involves a team like Dublin. They’re All-Ireland champions for a reason and they showed it again today. They are really, really good at ball retention – that’s a lesson we’d be hoping to pick up from them.”