4 Days, 4 Points & Two Shocking Performances
Cardiff City's points haul of 4 from two games sounds perfectly acceptable and appear to justify our lofty position as the Bluebirds lie 2nd in the Championship.
However, anyone who witness either of those games (or us poor sods who sat through both!) will tell you that Cardiff City are struggling to cope without the pace and guile provided by the likes of Bellamy and Chopra.
The 2-1 win over Millwall owed much to the visitor's reluctance to attack once they had been reduced to 10 men. I felt the Lions could easily have taken all three points, if they'd shown more ambition and supported Steve Morison better. AS it was, Andy Keogh popped up with a headed goal from nothing with just minutes remaining and ensured City took all three points.
Next up was Crystal Palace, in dire away form and missing a host of key players through injury and suspension. The Bluebirds huffed and puffed but failed to make any impression and were eventually indebted to goalkeeper Tom Heaton who made two fine saves to safguard a point for his side. Again, if the Eagles had wanted to, they could easily have pushed on and won the game - they were better for long periods, while City struggled to create any meaningful chances.
In both games, we have looked slow, laboured and devoid of pace and ideas. The ball spent far too long being exchanged between the back four while creative talents like Jason Koumas and Steve McPhail were virtual bystanders and contributed very little indeed. Worryingly, Lee Naylor looks to have become a slow and weak liability at left back, rather than the solid and effective performer he looked initially.
A Chopra, or Bellamy would have made all the difference in both games, preventing out midfield fron being closed down and effectively outmarked. The runs of these players are crucial to open up spaces for the likes of Whittingham and Burke to exploit. Bothroyd can't do it on his own, and Andy Keogh has struggled to find a role within the current set-up.
A big improvement is needed for Cardiff City, starting with tomorrow's trip to face Barnsley at their Oakwell fortress.