Date:Monday December 29 2008
Cardiff City were made to work hard to secure a 1-0 win over a Plymouth Argyle side set-up to earn a point yesterday. The Pilgrims opted to select a huge side and defended resolutely without committing players forward.
Cardiff City started brightly and were on top for 20 minutes. Michael Chopra wasted the best chance when firing wide from a low Parry cross - an absolute sitter by his standards. Later on, Chops twice went through on goal but one effort was saved and the other screwed wide. Bothroyd also danced through 6 challenges but couldn't find a finish.
At the other end, Plymouth Argyle saw one Timar header expertly cleared off the line by McNaughton and a fast counter attack end in a goal only for the linesman to flag for offside. He was offside but for a few moments it seemed the referee had over-ruled the decision. On the stroke of half-time, Chopra stung the palms of Larrieu with a 20 yard free-kick.
The second half became more of a dog-fight as Cardiff tried for a winner while Plymouth stubbornly held onto the clean sheet and restricted us to long balls or long shots.
Routledge almost picked out Gavin Rae with a through ball but the pass was overhit, Routledge himself also fired over and two low efforts were blocked by the spirited Pilgrims defence. Just when it looked like it wouldn't be our day, Rae pulled back to a lurking Bothroyd whose low effort found the corner to improve a frustrating day for the striker. He was forced to battle for everything and given no space - yet he popped up with the matchwinner - well done Jay.
In the final minute, Plymouth won a corner and called up 'keeper Larrieu - surely lightning couldn't strike twice? Well no, we cleared the ball to Chopra on halfway and he set off towards goal, the last man cynically scythed him down for a straight red card, no option no complaints. A shame as Chops would have loved to have signed off with a goal and was certain to score once past the last man.
An impressive win for the Bluebirds, a real battle and one that last season would surely have been a draw - we move up into 4th place.
Date:Monday December 29 2008
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