John Caulfield may have lost his first game as Galway United manager but he saw enough in Friday night's seven-goal FAI Cup defeat Shelbourne to encourage him that he can turn things around.

"I don't think it was a 5-2 game anyway," the former Cork City boss told RTÉ Sport.

"We know how good Shelbourne are, and they dominated early on. We had great chances to score and get the penalty at 0-0, miss the penalty and then close to half-time the free-kick was soft and they score.

"I wanted the lads to really go out and start passing the ball and in the first 10 minutes of the second half we were excellent and got back to 1-1.

"We conceded, came back again and at two-all I thought we going to win the match. We were using our pace and switching the play.

"But the big lesson from tonight is that out of five goals, we handed Shelbourne four, and if you make mistakes they’ll punish you. We have to work on that.

"But there are lots of positives and things I was very encouraged about by how we played."

Galway are second from bottom of the First Divsion and unlikely to figure in the promotion play-offs.

For Caulfield, the remaining 10 games of the season are all about rebuilding confidence and getting rid of that zero from the W column.

"There's great talent and enthusiasm among the lads," said the 2017 double-winning boss.

"Even in the week we have had there has been a marked improvement.

"The confidence is down because the club haven’t won a match all season and we haven’t been scoring goals.

"There are 10 league games to go, all I want to do is to see if we can start winning a few games and get a bit of confidence back.

"We haven’t won a game since the start of the season, which is incredible because there is a lot of talent in the team.

"I know the lads have lost by the odd goal and sometimes you can make excuses but really you can’t make excuses, you have to look at yourself. Ultimately, we have to put the excuses aside and start performing."

Shels, by contrast, are in decent form in the Premier Division, and manager Ian Morris had the luxury of being frustrated with his side's display, even in in a three-goal win.

"I thought we did create quite a lot of chances," he said. "The other side, I don't think our performance was at the levels that we’ve been putting in recently.

"Out of possession, our shape wasn’t great and we made poor decisions, probably coughed up a lot more chances and the two goals we gave away were not good enough.

"That side for me was really disappointing and it’s left  a sour taste in my mouth but going away from home in the Cup, scoring five goals and creating the chances that we did… getting yourself in the next round, that’s all the cup is and we’ve done that."