Failure to finish off games costing us 21/03/2011Posted by NB in Cardiff City.
Tags: Chris Burke, Craig Bellamy, Darren Purse, David Forde, Fabio Borini, Michael Chopra, Millwall, Swansea
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Millwall 3 Cardiff City 3
Cardiff’s inability to finish matches off once again cost us against Millwall Saturday, and as much as I’d like to convince myself otherwise, I feel our chances of a top two finish with eight games to go are very small.
Tags: Ashley Williams, Paul Merson, Swansea
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Swansea added new meaning to the term “total football” on Saturday when they managed to fall behind to an incredible Ashley Williams own goal after seven minutes in their away game against Derby.
Priceless Craig Bellamy 07/02/2011Posted by NB in Cardiff City, season 2010/11.
Tags: Aaron Ramsey, Craig Bellamy, Darcy Blake, Dave Jones, Dekel Keinan, Jay Bothroyd, Jay Emmanuel-Thomas, Kevin McNaughton, Mark Hudson, Michael Chopra, Swansea
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I’m still on cloud nine after our victory over Swansea yesterday, and let me heap some praise on or captain Craig Bellamy, whose tremendous goal five minutes before the end won us the game.
To say that Craig Bellamy is worth his weight in gold is a grave understatement. Weighing in at around 70 kg, that’s only about £1 884 843,10 worth of gold measured by today’s spot price for gold, and Bellamy is certainly worth a lot more than that! When Manchester City brought Bellamy to the club from West Ham they paid £18 million for him, and even though his market value is probably not quite as high today, I don’t think any Cardiff supporter will disagree when I say that to us he is, well, priceless!
Yesterday our captain didn’t have one of his best games overall, which he was the first to admit in his post-match interviews, but every time he got the ball he was booed by the home fans, so in a sense you can tell they rate him highly as well! And then to score a goal like that. In a derby match like that. The goal was Premier League class, if not world class, and that’s no less than what we can expect from a player of Bellamy’s caliber. Is he really playing for us, or are we dreaming?!
Praise also goes to Mark Hudson, who has been under a lot of criticism this season. Goals win matches, and Bellamy will therefore no doubt and not undeservedly be named man of the match by many. I think Mark Hudson equally deserves that title! He was superb, and alongside him Dekel Keinan made a fine debut that might indicate that Hudson – Keinan will be our central defenders in the games to come.
A quick mention of Darcy Blake, who replaced Kevin McNaughton in the second half at left back. Blake played well, especially going forward, and his magnificent raid resulting in a shot hitting the post deserved a better destiny. What a way that would have been for the home grown player to have scored his first senior goal for the club!
It wasn’t to be though, and I suppose Jay Bothroyd, Michael Chopra and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas will also be disappointed not having found the back of the net although being presented with some glorious chances. Bothroyd with less than a minute gone.
I have to comment on Aaron Ramsey as well. What a superb display it was by him!
Only a few players didn’t play up to their usual standards yesterday, but I won’t spoil my revel in positives by naming them!
All in all it was a great team effort, and Dave Jones got his tactics right as well. Brilliant!
Today has been all about making the most of the bragging rights, and I was quick to download the fine PC wallpaper provided by the club (pictured above).
A special t-shirt (pictured right) being made also underlines the fact that we’re squeezing every drop out of this magnificent victory over Swansea, and who can blame us!
To a Cardiff fan having beaten Swansea is as good as it gets. That’s just the way it is, and I’m loving it!
A perfect birthday present 06/02/2011Posted by NB in Cardiff City, season 2010/11.
Tags: Craig Bellamy, Swansea
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Swansea City 0 Cardiff City 1
It’ s my birthday today, so thank you to Cardiff and Craig Bellamy for making it a happy one by beating the Jacks!
We’re not the only ones 19/12/2010Posted by NB in Cardiff City, season 2010/11.
Tags: Leeds, Q.P.R., Swansea
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With our scheduled home game versus Burnley on Saturday being called of due to lots of snow and wintery conditions, it was nice to see both Q.P.R. and Swansea lose.
It’s a small comfort but still a comfort that it’s not only our form that’s bad at present but that also the seemingly unbeatable Q.P.R. are starting to stumble.
It’s surprising though to have been replaced at second place by Leeds, who did not seem like promotion contenders at all when we beat them 4-0 at Elland Road a couple of months ago.
It’s a very close race in the Championship at present. With a good run even clubs as low down as sixteenth place now could end up with automatic promotion come May, and with our bad results lately I’m not taking anything for granted.
I expect the picture will be a lot clearer at the end of January when some clubs have gone shopping for new players and when eight more games or so have been played.
No blip 15/12/2010Posted by NB in Cardiff City, season 2010/11.
Tags: Dave Jones, Gabor Gyepes, Marvin Emnes, Middlesbrough, Swansea
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Middlesbrough 1 Cardiff City 0
One win, two draws and four defeats is City’s not very pretty record since the five wins in October. If Dave Jones actually used the word “blip” about City’s rather embarrassing defeat at the Riverside Stadium on Saturday he’s way of the mark.
I keep reading about how we have “the best squad in the Championship”, “a squad capable of winning the Championship title” and so on. Surely Marshall, Naylor, Gyepes, McNaughton, Hudson, Burke, Whittingham, Olofinjana, Drinkwater ( Chopra, 51 ) , Bellamy, Keogh is a line up that should be by far good enough to beat lowly Middlesbrough or at least get a draw. Even with the injured Jay Bothroyd missing. I guess the problem is that we’re not playing like a team at the moment but more like individuals, and when some of the individuals are nervous and frightened as Jones says, it’s not going to win us many games…
After his match winning goal for the Swans against us, City was well aware of the damage the tricky Marvin Emnes, now back with Middlesbrough after ending his loan spell in Wales, could cause. Still it was Gabor Gyepes’ failure to control the Dutchman and his foul on him for the decisive penalty on 40 minutes that cost us the points.
How we’re still in second place I don’t know, but Swansea have crept up level on points with us and even Leeds, who we gave such a footballing lesson less than two months ago, are now only two points behind us! With Q.P.R. slipping to their first defeat Friday evening, and Swansea drawing 1-1 at home against Millwall we had an excellent opportunity to strengthen our foothold in the promotion race, but as so many times before it wasn’t to be.
I’m not going to call for Dave Jones to be sacked, as I still regard him as a great manager and the right man to lead us through the season, but having said that, I do question the defense he’s put together and the way he criticised them after the Boro match without seeming willing to take any blame himself.
With team spirit and cohesion obviously a problem at present the manager has got to shoulder his part of the blame, and it’s for a large part up to him to sort things out.
With two home games coming up Jones and the players have the chance to do just that.
Jermaine Easter severing his Cardiff ties 01/12/2010Posted by NB in Cardiff City, season 2010/11.
Tags: Alan Tait, Jamal Easter, Jermaine Easter, Lee Trundle, Swansea, the Ayatholla
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Welsh international Jermaine Easter, born in Cardiff and brother of former Cardiff City trainee Jamal Easter, has severed his Cardiff ties this week by joining Swansea on loan from MK Dons. He’s also said that he would like the move to become permanent.
A few times over the past years I’ve thought of Jermaine Easter as a potential signing for City, and it was very pleasing when he four years ago, after scoring for Wycombe Wanderers against Swansea at the Liberty Stadium in a Carling Cup match, celebrated by doing the Ayatholla. Easter now says he did it mostly for his mates, as he’s never supported the Bluebirds, which makes me wonder why on earth he bothered to provoke the home fans. I imagine a lot of Swansea supporters will find it hard to ever forgive the striker, and I understand them. Would any Cardiff fan ever accept Lee Trundle or Alan Tait playing for Cardiff (although comparing what they did to Easter’s goal celebration is perhaps a bit unfair)?
By selling his Cardiff soul the way he’s done now by joining the high flying Swans in what’s probably his quest for a final go at experiencing Premier League football in his career, I suggest his Cardiff mates lets him know exactly what sort of treachery he’s making himself guilty of!
Sickening 07/11/2010Posted by NB in Cardiff City, season 2010/11.
Tags: Chris Burke, Daniel Drinkwater, Dave Jones, Jay Bothroyd, Marvin Emnes, Michael Chopra, Swansea, Tom Heaton
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Cardiff City 0 Swansea City 1
I got sick last night, so my plans for watching the local derby at a pub in Bergen went down the drain so to speak… Watching from my sickbed I witnessed the Bluebirds suffer a deserved but incredibly annoying defeat at the hands of the Jacks.
Maybe things would have been different had Cardiff been awarded a penalty after about fifteen minutes, when Michael Chopra, standing completely still in front of Swansea’s goalkeeper was jumped upon by the custodian, but the referee somehow manged to award a free kick to Swansea. Just another example of the ridiculous over-protection that goalkeepers tend to get from referees is.
It was interesting to see Dave Jones opting for a 4-4-3-formation in Jay Bothroyd’s abscence, and I was surprised to see Danny Drinkwater go straight into the starting lineup having been out injured for so long.
Going into half time with the score at 0-0 I had a feeling that it would also end 0-0. Both teams seemed solid defensively. If any team looked like scoring during the second half, it was the visitors. Only when an excellent long kick from Tom Heaton found Craig Bellamy and the captain was one-on-one with Swansea’s goalie did I think we should score, and Bellamy perhaps also should have done better with a header that was saved late on. By then City were already trailing 0-1 as Swansea’s Marvin Emnes did well to score behind Heaton, who didn’t do quite as well in that situation. I’d taken note of the pacey Dutchman Emnes’ loan move to Swansea from Middlesbrough, and how he scored on his debut. I expect him to return to Boro under their new manager Mowbray, but that won’t change the fact that he became match-winner today…
Chris Burke looked great coming on as sub in the second half, and it’s easy in hindsight to ask if he should maybe have started the game.
This was our first home defeat of the season, and it hurts. Swansea were six points behind us, but the gap is now only three points, and Q.P.R. are back on top of the table.
We must win again on Wednesday when we travel to Reading.
Not very Jol-ly 22/07/2010Posted by NB in Cardiff City, season 2010/11.
Tags: Dave Jones, Fulham, Hull, Leicester, Martin Jol, Nigel Pearson, Paulo Sousa, Swansea
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I’m a bit frightened to open my web browser these days. Will the headline “Dave Jones appointed Fulham’s new manager” be what greets me?
With the current transfer embargo I haven’t been too hopeful of reading of any new Cardiff signings lately, but who would have thought that the faith of Martin Jol would become so interesting for Cardiff City supporters? He’s the manager of Ajax and not anywhere near being a candidate for becoming manager of the Bluebirds, but in these times of managerial merry-go-rounds, the turmoil and financial uncertainty at our club and the success and reputation of Dave Jones, any managerial vacancy in the Championship and the Premier League this summer has been cause for concern (apart from the Liverpool job perhaps, as it’s unlikely both that Jones would be offered that job and that he would take it being the Evertonian he is).
The news today that Jol is not becoming Fulham’s new manager even though he’s agreed personal terms paired with the bookies now holding Dave Jones as favorite to land the job is worrying. The word crisis has been used in conjunction with Cardiff already during the close season, so if Jones is to suddenly leave we’ll have to come up with an even stronger word to describe the situation for Cardiff.
It was good to see Hull going for Nigel Pearson in stead of Dave Jones as their new manager (although I’m pretty sure Mr. Jones wouldn’t have been interested in that job anyway), and it was even better to see the Jacks lose their “managerial prodigy” Paulo Sousa to the Foxes as Pearson’s replacement. Sousa’s following comments:
“I am delighted to be here, it is a great club with great supporters and a rich history and I am very excited by the challenge.”
“The club has a fantastic stadium with great facilities and I am very much looking forward to working with the players.”
…reads to me as a Cardiff City fan as:
“I’m so glad to have got away from Swansea, it is a crappy club with bad supporters and not much of a history and I wasn’t excited by being their manager.”
“The club has a terrible stadium lacking in facilities and I hated working with the players.”
I think this is the first time I agree with you on something, Paulo!
Fulham say they have a shortlist and will act fast, so I guess there won’t be many days until we know whether or not the Cottager’s new boss has firstname Dave and surname Jones. It’s a bit comforting to see that City today say that there hasn’t been any approach for Jones yet by Fulham, but if they ring him tomorrow morning then that’s of course worth squat. Let’s hope they go for the (in my opinion) highly overrated Sven Göran Eriksson in stead!
Fantastic! 04/04/2010Posted by NB in Cardiff City, season 2009/10.
Tags: Dave Jones, David Marshall, Jay Bothroyd, Leicester, Michael Chopra, Paulo Sousa, Stephen McPhail, Swansea
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Cardiff City 2 Swansea City 1
Usually Cardiff don’t play too well and go behind against Swansea. This time around they were the better team until the goal against came on 28 minutes. It probably shouldn’t have been a corner when Swansea scored, but on the other hand Cardiff shouldn’t have let the ball go straight in either. On Tuesday Leicester should have had a goal given just before half time, so I guess wrong decisions like this even out over the season.
But why on earth didn’t Cardiff put any players at the posts for Swansea’s corners? Do they never, or was it just in this game? A defender at the near post would probably have hindered the goal, and the repetitions show that David Marshall desperately tries to get Stephen McPhail to back a few metres nearer to the goal before the corner is taken.
The Jacks looked nervous at the beginning. As the game wore on they got their renowned passing game going, and it frustrated Cardiff who for long periods didn’t touch the ball. Still the overall position was 50-50, and Swansea’s passing game isn’t much good when they can’t use it to get forward and score goals.
Cardiff’s equalizer was a great finish by Chopra after a superb flicking header by Jay Bothroyd. Chopra’s goal was not as easy as it looked as the ball bounced off the ground just before he shot. Great control and technique by a natural born goalscorer.
In the second half I couldn’t believe my eyes as Joe Ledley came on. I thought he was a lot further of recovering from his hip operations, but what a perfect match for him to return!
As the clock ticked on towards full time it seemed very much like a draw was on the cards. I got a bit worried as the Jacks sent Shefki Kuqi on, as I think he’s a terrific player and a notorious goal scorer where ever he’s played. Luckily his header near the end wasn’t quite good enough when given time and space in front of Marshall and it was also a brilliant save from Cardiff’s custodian. What followed was amazing. Chopra’s movement just before the goal and his clinical finish was unbelievable to watch and the expression on his face when celebrating said all about how much it meant to both him personally, the team and the fans. It was just as great to see Dave Jones holding his arms aloft at the final whistle shortly after. We had won against Swansea for the first time in thirteen years and that even after being a goal down! Fantastic!
I must say Paulo Sousa’s post match comments were just pathetic. Credit to him for believing in his team, but to say things like “we deserved to win”, “we always play better than our opponents” and “we always create more chances than the others” is so arrogant. The statistics for the game yesterday show Cardiff had four shots on goal and four off target. Swansea had four on target and three off target. Swansea had truth be told eight corners compared to Cardiff’s three, but still there’s no reason for Sousa to be cocky having suffered defeat!
There’s a lot of talk in the media about how terrific it would be if both the Welsh sides can make the play-offs. Ha! I’d love it if Swansea miss out.
The question ahead of tomorrow’s tough away game against Nottingham Forest is if the job is now done? Is the play off place secured already? Don’t think for a second it is! All Cardiff fans know very well how quickly things can turn around, with both last seasons disastrous finish and Cardiff’s instability this season in mind. I for one won’t feel certain until it’s mathematically impossible for anyone outside the top six to catch us.
Just look at Leicester. Three games ago they were in fourth place, seven point ahead of Blackpool in seventh place and even having a game in hand. They were two points ahead of Cardiff in sixth. Three defeats later the Foxes find themselves in sixth place, just one point more than Blackpool in seventh and seven points adrift of Cardiff in fourth! So with five games to go and fifteen points still to be played for I don’t take anything for granted. I trust Dave Jones and the players don’t either.