Written by Benjamin James
Cardiff City and Stoke City currently sit level on points, separated only by Stoke’s superior goal difference. Cardiff City fans are, overall, pretty happy with how things have progressed this season whilst Stoke City fans are losing patience already with their new regime.
After Saturday’s expected demolition at the hands of Arsenal, Cardiff fans will be hoping for a good result against Stoke. It’s lazy to say that the Britannia is an intimidating place to go. In fact, I would say it’s a great time to play Stoke. An early goal could get the fans backs up and the players won’t react well to having added pressure from the home fans.
Defensively, there’s not much wrong with Cardiff City. It’s just going forward that we look weak. Campbell worked his socks off for little reward and still looks isolated on his own. Odemwingie came off the bench and was poor, once again.
Stoke are, notoriously, giants. Andreas Cornelius has had two substitute appearances since his injury return and now is the time to give him a start. Malky can’t expect him to make an impact with only 10 minutes left on the clock.
Our style of play means that the forward has to hold up the ball and wait for the wingers to support him. Campbell, though excellent, struggles to hold the ball up. Cornelius’ size should lend itself well to such a role. And though Cowie has been brilliant, Noone deserves a go to give us that attacking thrust. He can take players on and causes fullbacks problems.
Cardiff need to pick up a point against Stoke; with them being so close to us, a loss cannot be considered.
Stoke City v Cardiff City
Stoke have won four and lost none of their last six meetings in all competitions against Cardiff City (W4 D2 L0).
There have been just five goals scored in the last five Barclays Premier League matches played at the Britannia Stadium.
Jonathan Walters has scored three goals in his last four appearances against Cardiff City in all competitions.
Cardiff City have committed just 111 fouls this season - fewer than any other team in the top flight - while only Southampton (178) have conceded more than Stoke (177).
Stoke City have won just one of their last 10 Premier League games (W1 D4 L5).
Cardiff have won just one of their last seven Premier League matches (W1 D2 L4).
Stoke are one of three teams yet to score a headed goal this season along with Spurs and West Ham.
In fact, Stoke have mustered the joint-fewest headers on target in the top flight (4) along with Fulham and Crystal Palace.
In contrast, no team has conceded more headed goals than Stoke City (six, along with Fulham and Newcastle).
Only Fulham (83) have allowed more shots on target against them than Cardiff City this season (81).