Galway United have reached the First Division playoff final after defeating Bray Wanderers 1-0 at the Carlisle Grounds this evening.
John Caulfield's men took the lead through a Wilson Waweru goal in the 82nd minute, but the Tribesmen were never supposed to be here in the first place.
Wilson Waweru #GUFC pic.twitter.com/AVPe686aLh
— Galway United (@GalwayUnitedFC) October 31, 2020
On the final day of the league season, Galway were in sixth position, outside the playoffs.
They were 1-0 up on the final day against UCD. with a win ensuring fifth place and a playoff berth. However, two late goals from the Students meant Galway went down to sixth and then down to seventh.
However, Shane Duggan's last minute equaliser meant that Galway leapfrogged Cobh Ramblers and returned to their sixth place spot. Sixth, in a regular League of Ireland season, gets you nothing. Although, this was no ordinary season.
The team who finished in fifth, Cabinteely, were subject to an arbitration case from Wexford FC, with the South East club considered to have fielded an ineligible player during their tie earlier in the season.
Cabinteely were awarded the points despite Wexford winning the match on the pitch. The hearing's result on Thursday would determine whether it was Cabo or Galway that would face Bray in the playoff semi-final.
The hearing found in Wexford's favour, who had repeatedly stated that they had followed all rules and regulations when dealing with the registration of English player Ola Adeyemo.
That meant that Galway were thrust into the playoffs against a Bray Wanderers team who had a chance at automatic promotion going into Tuesday.
The win against Bray Wanderers marks an already significant turnaround for the Tribesmen since John Caulfield took over as manager in August.
They are now just two wins away from a return to the Premier Division.
After a thrilling 3-2 extra time win, Longford Town will be Galway's playoff opponents, with any number of Premier Division sides their potential final opponent.