Cardiff City 1 - West Bromwich Albion 1

Date: Wednesday 15th March 2023 Live on Sky Red Button
Competition: Sky Bet Championship
(4-4-2) Allsop, Romeo, Ng, McGuinness, O'Dowda, Ojo (Harris, 71), Sawyers, Wintle, Philogene, Davies (Kaba, 45), Etete (Rinomhota, 81)
Unused subs: Luthra, Ralls, Sang, Colwill
(3-5-2) Griffiths 5.5, Ajayi 5.3, O'Shea 5.9, Pieters 4.9 (Furlong, 84 4.0), Albrighton 3.4 (Rogic, 70 4.7), Wallace 5.5, Yokuslu 6.2, Molumby 5.0 (Gardner-Hickman, 84 5.8), Townsend 6.2, Swift 4.4 (Thomas-Asante, 70 5.1), Dike 5.4 (Reach, 58 3.3)
Unused subs: Button, Livermore
Manager: Carlos Corberán  3.8
Scorers: Kaba (65); Dike (17)
Referee: Leigh Doughty 5.4
Attendance: 17,785   Home Fans 3.4   Away Fans 6.9

Brendan Clegg:

Another frustrating away day. I think we’ve probably done enough or had enough chances to win the last 3 away games and look where we’d be.

It looked like we’d done enough and were in control but, in my view, a 10 minute spell of unnecessary coaching hubris and vanity cost us the 2 points we dropped. But more of that later.

CC changed the system and went 3-4-2-1 from the off and whilst the players needed a bit of time to adapt we looked okay and had plenty of the ball. Might we have won with the 4-2-3-1 though? We’ll never know.

The goal was superb and, for those of us who yearn for the days of having your best right winger out wide right and crossing early for your best attacking forward to attack, it was a think of beauty and smug self congratulation. Wallace did just that and Dike, up to that point looking like he was playing a totally different sport to everyone else and not in a good way, volleyed home clean and powerfully at the front post.

We remained on top for the half bar the odd rare scare, and even into the second looked more likely with Wallace seeing our best chance saved. Our lack of quality in their box was evident still and at times we were too patient or tried to walk it in.

Dike took a knock to the head and not long after was subbed for… Reach.

There was no need for this and ironically his first touch was to comically misjudge a decent aerial chance, a bit far out but totally unmarked and with all of the pace on the ball - any level of striker would’ve lapped it up.

Playing with no striker gifted Cardiff the initiative and it after penning us in they scored from a header that I think really should’ve been saved by a keeper at this level... Griffiths getting weak hands to it and watching it squirm in.

We replied with a Reach offside tap-in and within minutes brought on BTA (so assume he was fit enough) and Rogic, after which we took control again.

I thought we created enough situations again to win… Wallace spurning the best when played through and megging the keeper but wide of the post.

Desperate dice throws of Furlong and TGH gave us even more dominance and incisive build up play but in their final 3rd we didn’t have enough or do enough.

Our playoff hopes hang by a thread… maybe we need 8 wins from 9 now? Doable but unlikely and this championship is so poor. Gutted.

  • Griffiths - 5 Decent game but you’ve got to save that. Ultimately The points directly lost by Button and Griffiths are keeping us out of the play-offs.
  • Ajayi - 6 a bit erratic but showed qualities at times.
  • O’Shea - 6 Did okay, looked gutted.
  • Pieters - 6 Generally reliable but found the 3 physically tougher
  • Albrighton - 5 Some really good play but is playing like a player whose legs are gone but is still trying to play as if they haven’t. Needs to adapt.
  • Molumby - 6 A lion in the middle of the pitch and a kitten in the opposition box, sadly.
  • Yokuslu - 7 Controlled the game but ended up trying to force it a bit too much.
  • Townsend - 7 Another consistent performance
  • Swift - 5 Couldn’t get into it enough
  • Wallace - 5 Mixed bag. Quality has definitely dropped off, possibly through fatigue, but great effort again
  • Dike - 6 A great goal but sometimes it was like playing with a tree trunk up front.
  • Reach - 5 Can feel a bit aggrieved not to have started. Honest but lacking quality.
  • BTA - 6 All round game was much better than Dike, quicker in mind and body.
  • Rogic - 6 Thought it was his best cameo in a while… picked it up more than Swift even though I didn’t like the substitution. Looked sharper.
  • TGH - 6 Braver passing and quick.
  • Furlong - 6 lots of ball and some good throws