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Match Report: City Promised A Response & Delivered


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24 minutes ago, Alex_BCFC said:

I don’t think he had a good game as I’ve said - didnt hold the ball up often and gave it away. 

So yeh I’d stand by my 5 for him - be so good to have Fammy back next game. A player who actually scores regularly for us. 

I really doubt Weimann prefers Watkins but guess no one knows without asking him - why would you want a non scoring striker who hardly ever plays...no idea why LJ signed him tbh. There’s a reason he’s been nowhere near even the bench for a year. 

I think the reason he signed him would have something to do with 1 striker cannot play every game in a season. If he didn’t sign him then the options you would have today were semenyo or rodri? I will guess you wouldn’t of rated either of them either?

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Agree with a lot of the sentiment but not the ratings. We were great today. Pereira was top drawer today and managed a tricky Hoilett well. Andi worked his backside off as usual and was for me streets above Watkins who did a very good job but didn’t give us any real threat. 


Nagy was also great to have back and his quality is obvious but he was equally rusty as hell. Fam back, more players getting time back from injury, I’m getting quietly excited.

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43 minutes ago, Davefevs said:

Proved an awkward opponent for Flint and Nelson today.  Worked hard, to harass defenders into hurried clearances.  Provided a physical challenge so that the likes of Weimann and O’Dowda didn’t need to get involved in that stuff...allowing them to play their game.  Got fouled a few times

Much more to his game today than what he did on the ball.  Had Brownhill laid a better ball back to him, he might’ve opened the scoring.

I think his teammates and the management team may think he contributed more than you thought.

Out of interest, were you there or watching it on telly (I watched it on telly).

He did work hard, that's a fair point, but the problem is he's sadly lacking in quality on the ball. When we need someone to either hold it up or stretch the play he doesn't really do either. He's not a striker but he just doesn't look like much of anything IMO.

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3 hours ago, Olé said:

After their stuttering form since the last international break City came away from a blown three points at Barnsley a week ago "angry" and looking for a result - and they delivered in the Severnside Derby with an energetic, committed and ultimately well deserved 1-0 win away at rivals Cardiff.

It was the visitors first result in the Welsh capital since 2002 and it was won off the back of robust defending led by Ashley Williams, and a quick-thinking, all action midfield led by match winner Brownhill, at the heart of his busy supporting act from O'Dowda, Watkins, Pereira and Rowe.

The contrast in styles couldn't have been more stark as a slicker City moved the ball better but always susceptible from Cardiff long balls forward - twice giving the hosts a spell of pressure from which they hit the crossbar from range in either half, only for Brownhill to show them how it was done.

City came into the game acknowledging an aerial threat by replacing Moore with Baker at the back, and there was a long awaited return for Adam Nagy at the base of City's midfield, presumably tasked with stemming the invention of predecessor Marlon Pack, one of 3 ex Johnson players.

True to the City manager's word, the away side raced out of the blocks at a freezing cold Cardiff stadium, by far the quicker to settle in midfield, winning first balls across the midfield and producing overlaps from both wing backs to good effect right in front of their boisterous away following.

After just 8 minutes Pereira did brilliantly to step away from a marker and release Weimann on the right, his cross was cut out but Brownhill recovered and this time set Rowe away on the left, from where his driven low cross was cut out for a corner to be taken by the sell out away corner.

From the resulting set piece Brownhill and O'Dowda combined on the touchline to toy with Cardiff, exchanging passes to create room before another fierce cross into the crowded box was turned just past the far post by Williams, with visiting fans in good voice anticipating an early City lead.

On 13 minutes that man Brownhill robbed the ball in midfield and his quick thinking through ball for Watkins put the keeper under pressure, his low clearance snared by Brownhill, squaring to Watkins whose first time finish was blocked and from the rebound the makeshift striker skyed over.

That should have been City's first as the goal was gaping at the second attempt, but it would be harsh to criticise Watkins - who gave everything, a constant nuisance for Cardiff, indeed minutes later he looked every bit the target man as he held up a direct ball and was hacked down by Pack.

At the midway point in the half wing back Pereira danced away from a Cardiff tackle and fed O'Dowda who strode through the midfield in space before finding Rowe on the left, who ran in on goal, cut inside and laid it back across the box for O'Dowda to curl just over from City's stunning counter.

It had been largely one way traffic but just inside the half hour Cardiff began to settle - a well worked probing move around the box saw Tomlin lift a ball far post for Bogle to head straight at Bentley. The pressure continued and from a half cleared corner Hoilett fired onto the bar from 25 yards.  

City might have rued not capitalising on a dominant start as their more direct hosts grew in confidence, but on 38 the visitors produced the move of the half, Watkins and O'Dowda combining on the left, then Pereira and Brownhill on the right, before crossing for Weimann to flash a header wide.

After half time this time it was Cardiff who found their feet first and City who failed to settle - within minutes both Williams and Nagy flung last gasp boots at crosses to each turn behind for corners as pressure mounted - Pack booed and clapped as he took each kick in front of the away fans.

The former City man was now running the midfield and with the visitors sitting deep and looking a shadow of the fluid side that controlled spells in the first half, Rowe had to clatter Tomlin with the playmaker in space, and minutes later Bacuna had room to skid a long range shot onto the bar. 

Amazingly City could have gone in front at the hour mark and against the run of play - O'Dowda setting off on a weaving run at Cardiff's backtracking midfield and laying it left for Rowe who was able to thread a low return ball into the box at the second attempt, which O'Dowda nearly turned in.

Perhaps sensing the game was still there for City if only they could regain midfield fluidity and actually hold up and exchange the ball in the Cardiff half, Johnson sent on Palmer for the tireless Watkins, and the strength and vision of the away playmaker would provide the visitors a vital pivot.  

Already looking a different side, it was the midway point in the second half when the City substitute held the ball up, bringing Rowe into play, who ran on, cut inside and laid it back to Brownhill in space 30 yards out. From where Cardiff had twice hit the bar, the captain lasered into the top corner.

Pandemonium in the packed away end and with their fans singing loudly City now had their tails up. Minutes later they broke again and the marauding Brownhill drove forward waiting for support before picking a pass for Pereira who crossed for Weimann to steer a low shot at the keeper.

With Palmer now providing Brownhill with a much needed outlet - his strength and control in front of home fans effortless at times - City rarely looked uncomfortable the rest of the game, although Nagy and the defence earned the result by winning everything Cardiff threw at them. 

In the end an utterly deserved three points for a side that while short on end product was by far the more committed across the pitch, clearly drilled on reverses and exchanges to move the ball quickly, and in Brownhill had an unstoppable force at the heart of a midfield that never stopped running.

 

Bentley 7 Touch of the Fielding with one kick but handling faultless as usual 

Baker 8 Won everything in air and on floor

Kalas 8 See Baker

Williams 9 See Baker plus really wanted it and a nuisance at both ends 

Pereira 7 Really good first half, potential for man of the match but became careless towards end and rightly switched for Moore

Rowe 7 Like Pereira when we played well it owed much to our ability to get the wing backs overlapping, felt he was a bit exposed towards the end of the first half and start of the second 

Nagy 7 His role gives Brownhill and O'Dowda much more freedom which makes them much better attacking players. A few rusty touches but tidied up wherever he could.

Brownhill 9 From the word go he led by example, chased every second ball, had a smart touch or pass in mind whenever he was under pressure, kept us ticking over and oozed confidence after his goal

O'Dowda 7 Played brilliantly in his link up with Brownhill first half, can be a real threat running at people, but equally we saw second half how frustrating he can be as he didn't capitalise on dangerous positions 

Watkins 7 Perhaps a sentimental rating based on low expectations but I thought he was brilliant, a nuisance who won the ball well and brought others into play. Should have scored too.

Weimann 6 Seems weird saying it given he works harder than anyone but thought he was our weakest player well marked out of it up front 

 

Palmer 8 His introduction was decisive, few players with combination of strength and quality on the ball - and extras points for grinning at and winding up home fans on the half way line 

Moore 7 Did what he needed to - won the only header aimed at him

Excellent report for me. Only minor point is that I had Moore winning 2 headers. 

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22 minutes ago, RonWalker said:

He did work hard, that's a fair point, but the problem is he's sadly lacking in quality on the ball. When we need someone to either hold it up or stretch the play he doesn't really do either. He's not a striker but he just doesn't look like much of anything IMO.


He’s started 8 games in his time here.  Played a grand total of 796 minutes.  Scored a couple of important goals in those limited minutes though.

Injuries have not helped.  The only run (of sorts) he’s had was at the start of last season.

https://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/marley-watkins/leistungsdatendetails/spieler/91315/verein/698

I think he’s unfairly become a figure of fun in a lot of fans eyes.  He ain’t a pretty footballer, but he’s a good team player.  Hunt missed him in front of him last season.  It takes all sorts to make a good team.  He’s come in (from the wilderness of injury) and contributed to City getting 4 points from 2 away games.

As I said, he’s not the best player in our squad.  He would not be in our starting line-up if Afobe was fit or Fam suspended.  But he isn’t useless either.

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1 minute ago, Davefevs said:


He’s started 8 games in his time here.  Played a grand total of 796 minutes.  Scored a couple of important goals in those limited minutes though.

Injuries have not helped.  The only run (of sorts) he’s had was at the start of last season.

https://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/marley-watkins/leistungsdatendetails/spieler/91315/verein/698

I think he’s unfairly become a figure of fun in a lot of fans eyes.  He ain’t a pretty footballer, but he’s a good team player.  Hunt missed him in front of him last season.  It takes all sorts to make a good team.  He’s come in (from the wilderness of injury) and contributed to City getting 4 points from 2 away games.

As I said, he’s not the best player in our squad.  He would not be in our starting line-up if Afobe was fit or Fam suspended.  But he isn’t useless either.

That wasn't him limping/trying to run across the pitch after the final whistle towards the fans was it? 

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7 minutes ago, Davefevs said:


He’s started 8 games in his time here.  Played a grand total of 796 minutes.  Scored a couple of important goals in those limited minutes though.

Injuries have not helped.  The only run (of sorts) he’s had was at the start of last season.

https://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/marley-watkins/leistungsdatendetails/spieler/91315/verein/698

I think he’s unfairly become a figure of fun in a lot of fans eyes.  He ain’t a pretty footballer, but he’s a good team player.  Hunt missed him in front of him last season.  It takes all sorts to make a good team.  He’s come in (from the wilderness of injury) and contributed to City getting 4 points from 2 away games.

As I said, he’s not the best player in our squad.  He would not be in our starting line-up if Afobe was fit or Fam suspended.  But he isn’t useless either.

I think we'll end up agreeing to disagree; you're totally right that he's a very hard worker and he showed that today, but I just don't see the value in him without much to speak of in the way of quality. We were certainly more effective when he went off.

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Just now, RonWalker said:

I think we'll end up agreeing to disagree; you're totally right that he's a very hard worker and he showed that today, but I just don't see the value in him without much to speak of in the way of quality. We were certainly more effective when he went off.

Yeah, we probably were....but in contrast, we were less effective when he came off at Barnsley.

We can agree to disagree though 😀

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28 minutes ago, Davefevs said:

Yeah, we probably were....but in contrast, we were less effective when he came off at Barnsley.

We can agree to disagree though 😀

I'll disagree with you too 😁

I thought he did alright v Barnsley, but he was sloppy today. 

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I think it's very difficult to judge an individual player's impact purely by watching them and measuring their contribution by goals, touches even assists. I haven't been Watkins' biggest fan by any means but I thought he did well today. He clearly had a role in unsettling the Cardiff defence.

We never have easy games against our Welsh friends. More often than not they get the better of us (in recent years) and we have a crap record at the Cardiff City stadium.

Truth is, we took that game to them and played the ball round far better than I thought we would with Warnock's usual gamesmanship. Flint was largely ineffective, Pack was Pack and Tomlin was mostly forgettable. All three had every reason to prove a point today.

Warnock hasn't lost to us for 10 years. We haven't won in Cardiff since 2002. Their first home league defeat of the season.

So, credit to the City players and coaching team for giving us three points I wasn't banking on.

"It's a cracking goal to win the game, you have to say that" - Neil Warnock

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Awful game to watch but excellent result.  Brownhill the one piece of quality. Lots of hard work and effort though and a typical result for us based on last 2 seasons approach to away games. Points gained , again, when we are still missing some key players keeping us firmly in the hunt for top 6. It can only get better when we have a full squad available. 

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11 hours ago, Alex_BCFC said:

Yeh can't wait to have Fammy back. 

Pity we can’t combine their attributes, if Fam has to control and use the ball under pressure forget it, the right cross into the box he will instinctively bury it, Watkins does quite well with the ball and is able to move with it, until he is in a scoring position - in which he seems to pause and think about it and the chance is lost.  Most disappointing aspect of our play today was Callum, he was running really well with the ball, but what’s the point when it’s constantly cross field and ignoring gaps forward.

Despite everything what a game! Win at Cardiff and a fantastic atmosphere, still buzzing!

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1 hour ago, billywedlock said:

Awful game to watch but excellent result.  Brownhill the one piece of quality. Lots of hard work and effort though and a typical result for us based on last 2 seasons approach to away games. Points gained , again, when we are still missing some key players keeping us firmly in the hunt for top 6. It can only get better when we have a full squad available. 

It was a bit like the Barnsley game where we battled on and lost it in a silly fashion. We are better after that one.

Today (Sunday) It was a fantastic goal but probably it should of been a 1-1 draw. Wait till we get the full squad back next week and the top six will turn in to a top two by December 

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13 hours ago, RobArnold10 said:

Agree with a lot of the sentiment but not the ratings. We were great today. Pereira was top drawer today and managed a tricky Hoilett well. Andi worked his backside off as usual and was for me streets above Watkins who did a very good job but didn’t give us any real threat. 


Nagy was also great to have back and his quality is obvious but he was equally rusty as hell. Fam back, more players getting time back from injury, I’m getting quietly excited.

Nagy was rusty but Watkins who has had two starts all season wasn’t  ? 
 

 

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14 hours ago, Davefevs said:

Proved an awkward opponent for Flint and Nelson today.  Worked hard, to harass defenders into hurried clearances.  Provided a physical challenge so that the likes of Weimann and O’Dowda didn’t need to get involved in that stuff...allowing them to play their game.  Got fouled a few times

Much more to his game today than what he did on the ball.  Had Brownhill laid a better ball back to him, he might’ve opened the scoring.

I think his teammates and the management team may think he contributed more than you thought.

Out of interest, were you there or watching it on telly (I watched it on telly).

Indeed. I said at the match thread that Watkins offers more in this system than Semenyo or Famara and some people disagreed with me, which I can completely understand, but I stand by the point.

I rate Famara but I think this season he has been asked to play against his natural game and, as a result he has struggled, I don't think we'll get the best out of Famara without changing the way we play. That is obviously an option but it is down to whether we want to do that. 

Over the last couple of games, Watkins has been a constant nuisance who unsettles defenders and forces mistakes, which others can capitalise on. I don't think he is a long term answer but I do think, with Afobe out, Weimann and Watkins could be the best front two we have for the next couple of months if we are sticking with the current formation. 

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Watkins is crap, Big Dave is crap, Semenyo is crap, Rodri is crap, our only decent forward is out for the season, O’Dowda offers nothing, Rowe isn’t a full back and our midfield get well and truly battered every single week. Oh and don’t forget the only table that counts, xG, shows us firmly adrift at the bottom. Just cannot see how we can possibly stay in this division with that lot against us.

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It was noticeable to me, the lack of urgency in the Cardiff team, no rush from any throw-in, free-kick or goal-kick & it was also massively noticeable that Cardiff didn’t once play out from the back from the keeper or a goal-kick! Everything was hoofed long, it was right back to the 70’s & 80’s styles of football from them, kind of a case of the further the ball is from our goal, the less chance you have of scoring! 
A kind of dinosaur football if you like.

And I know a lot has been made of our lack of atmosphere at home at times but everything about Cardiff was embarrassing, their lack of atmosphere, their ‘football’ (if you can call it that) & just the general set-up there! It was my first time to their ‘new stadium’ & I bet most Cardiff fans hate having given up Ninnian Park for that, I walked away wondering where the ‘Cardiff’ of old had gone & the only link to the old Cardiff came from their style of football!

I certainly wouldn’t be happy to have to pay experience that more than once or twice a year (here’s hoping we don’t get them in the cup this year).

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17 hours ago, Bristol Rob said:

Anyone want to mark LJ out of ten?

7 for me, tinkered with the selections well to address the aerial threat, but was possibly too slow to make a positive change in the second half.

Can't argue with a win however!

I honest thought it was a case of who blinked first.

As the home team the pressure is more on Cardiff to dominate the game and make things work. Yes they had periods of domination, but so did we. I thought as I said LJ was perhaps delaying using subs to see what Cardiff would do. We weren’t doing badly to need a rushed sub, but if we made the wrong one we could have tipped the balance and maybe not in our favour I thought. 

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2 hours ago, Numero Uno said:

Watkins is crap, Big Dave is crap, Semenyo is crap, Rodri is crap, our only decent forward is out for the season, O’Dowda offers nothing, Rowe isn’t a full back and our midfield get well and truly battered every single week. Oh and don’t forget the only table that counts, xG, shows us firmly adrift at the bottom. Just cannot see how we can possibly stay in this division with that lot against us.

What a load of crap😉

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2 hours ago, Numero Uno said:

Watkins is crap, Big Dave is crap, Semenyo is crap, Rodri is crap, our only decent forward is out for the season, O’Dowda offers nothing, Rowe isn’t a full back and our midfield get well and truly battered every single week. Oh and don’t forget the only table that counts, xG, shows us firmly adrift at the bottom. Just cannot see how we can possibly stay in this division with that lot against us.

That is how I feel reading some of the sh1t on here! We went away gave as good as we got came away with an excellent three points and some knob writes we were poor all over the field and gets 7 (seven) effing likes.

We have played Taylor Moore, Williams, Rowe, Semenyo, Massengo consistently non of whom would have been starters in August, one of whom most wanted to sell to South Effing End, another of whom was labelled on here as an uninspiring signing from League One. 

We have lost Kalas, Smith, Afobe, Nagy Hunt etc etc and are still sixth having played at times with half a team of what were reserves...The value of our squad must have close to doubled in two an a half months!!!

If we can keep players fit and coming back we have a huge shot at this.... and for the record every team in the division will create chances its the team that takes them on the day that comes out on top. We will not out play many teams but we do find a way to win. That is not us being poor, it is us winning! 

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