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Clean Sheet? With That Cardiff City Back Four?!

Clean Sheet? With That Cardiff City Back Four?!

Cardiff City overcame all the odds to secure a valuable victory over Middlebrough and had to blood 2 youngsters in what appeared to be a shaky back four. Actually, the makeshift unit, superbly marshalled by Hudson, held firm to deny one of the best and in-form teams in the division.

City actually started with what Malky Mackay considers his first choice back four with Taylor and Connolly on the flanks and the solid and imposing Turner/Hudson combination in the centre. There was no McNaughton on the bench and that appeared a major blow when Turner was forced off injured.

In normal circumstances, McNaughton would have slotted in at right-back with Connolly shifting to his most natural centre-half role. Instead, the only defensive cover on the bench was Ben Nugent - a teenager who has impressed in the Development squad but not yet played Championship football for City. The difficulties were further compounded when Andrew Taylor was also forced off and while I had expected Gunnarsson to deputise (again) on the right and Connolly attempt to play left-back - Malky opted to throw another youngster on in Joe Ralls.

Ralls is left-footed, but is a lightweight and tidy central midfielder. Far from an obvious choice at left-back. However, both he and Nugent grew into their role and showed incredible maturity and determination to keep Boro at bay.

This was our first clean sheet in four games, having conceded an alarming 8 in the previous three. A 4-0 home win over lacklustre Burnley was the last shout-out but you have to go back to September to find the next clean sheet kept by David Marshall. Once again, squad depth does appear to be a concern for Cardiff City, however, the youngsters performed admirably in difficult circumstances and we recorded the crucial win…. I just wouldn`t want to see the same back-four every week!!

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Writer:Bluebirdshroom
Date:Monday November 19 2012
Time: 10:25AM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Burnley 46 26 15 5 93 37
P Middlesbrough 46 26 11 9 89 32
3 Brighton 46 24 17 5 89 30
4 Hull City 46 24 11 11 83 34
5 Derby County 46 21 15 10 78 23
6 Sheff Wed 46 19 17 10 74 21
7 Ipswich 46 18 15 13 69 2
8 Cardiff 46 17 17 12 68 5
9 Brentford 46 19 8 19 65 5
10 Birmingham 46 16 15 15 63 4
11 Preston 46 15 17 14 62 0
12 Q.P.R. 46 14 18 14 60 0
13 Leeds Utd 46 14 17 15 59 -8
14 Wolves 46 14 16 16 58 -5
15 Blackburn 46 13 16 17 55 0
16 Forest 46 13 16 17 55 -4
17 Reading 46 13 13 20 52 -7
18 Bristol City 46 13 13 20 52 -17
19 Huddersfield 46 13 12 21 51 -11
20 Fulham 46 12 15 19 51 -13
21 Rotherham 46 13 10 23 49 -18
R Charlton 46 9 13 24 40 -40
R MK Dons 46 9 12 25 39 -30
R Bolton 46 5 15 26 30 -40
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