Cardiff City Prepare For 8-game 'Mini-Season'
Following the International break, Cardiff City will kick off what will surely be approached as a .mini-season` with a home clash against Derby County. Some disappointing results and performances of late, and inconsistency over the season see the Bluebirds in fourth place - behind Norwich City and Swansea City in the race for second place.
Prior to the break, things were not good. We conceded last minute equalisers to Barnsley at home, then Millwall away to drop 4 crucial points. Prior to that, we`d lost the previous 2 games, including a 1-0 defeat at relegation threatened Crystal Palace. The players were lacking confidence, while morale was low within the fans, especially after a season-ending injury for Chopra, and a 4-6 week lay-off for the impressive Mark Hudson.
Two weeks later, and we are given a chance, a real chance to start afresh. There are 8 games remaining and we can approach this run from a new perspective, without the hindrances of previous performances, injuries etc. The squad is more than capable of winning the majority of these games, and are favourites for many. QPR (H) and Burnley (A) seem difficult but the remainder are eminently winnable.
The Derby County clash is absolutely key. If we start slowly, looking nervous with slow build-up, lack of cutting edge and the 'old faithful` long hopeful ball to Bothroyd - we will struggle. Both players and fans will slip into old disgruntled habits and the frustration will show. A draw won`t be good enough.
If, however, we come out brightly, looking sharp and playing to our strengths - it can be so different. A fortnight break to breath new life into the promotion challenge….. Dave Jones, unlike some of his counterparts, has chosen to see it like that. CCFC have given the players a prolonged spell away from the club while others have remained training. Hopefully, that is what was needed and we will reap the rewards.
An early goal, an energetic performance and just maybe an emphatic win. That really would sweep the cobwebs away and set Cardiff City up nicely for the run-in…..