Ahead of tomorrow’s match, Bluebirdshroom from Vital Cardiff was kind enough to answer a few questions. So with thanks…
1) Is the season going as you expected and what has been the highlight and lowlight so far?
Pretty much as expected, I think we all accepted our defensive weaknesses would hamper us and we lack the ability to really scrap when things get tough. Craig Bellamy`s stunner to beat Swansea would be a highlight but I suppose Marvin Emnes` goal at CCS for Swansea would also be a lowpoint.
2) Any January deals that we might not be aware of, but should look out for?
Jay Emmanuel-Thomas came in from Arsenal, but was eclipsed by the signing of Ramsey. He hasn`t hit top gear yet but an impressive goal against Hull was followed by a very lively first half at Ipswich – signs he`s ready to make a big impact.
3) Are you expecting to take 3 points, or would you settle for another scoreless draw?
We`ve struggled against the relegation threatened clubs but we have to come and beat you if we`re serious about promotion. The pressure will be off a little away from home, and we like to counter attack. It`s probably a must win game.
4) Where do you see your current weaknesses? Any clues will be greatly welcomed 🙂
Currently we have a new goalkeeper who has only played once but the main weakness is in central midfield. Hopefully Olofinjana will return but in McPhail and Whittingham we have two creative but slight players. If it became a battle, we have no hope!
5) Who will be your key dangerman?
Jay Bothroyd has lost a great deal of form and confidence after returning from injury but remains integral to our system. His goals have dried up but you feel he only needs one to get going again. He has been singled out by referees as going down too easily so is getting hardly anything from them – if he gets frustrated we`ll struggle.
6) Do you believe Palace should be worried about our position in the table, or do you feel we will pull up the table and survive?
Of course you should be worried! Charlton, Sheff Wed and Southampton prove that financially troubled ex-Premiership clubs can be relegated and Palace have been down there all season. Realistically Preston look doomed but Scunthorpe have hit a good run so Palace need to keep pace rather than wait for the lottery over the last few games.
7) Are you expecting a different challenge now Freedman is at the helm?
He`s hugely experienced and obviously has the respect around the club. He`ll be targeting next season to make his own mark and will be looking for passion and fight from his players to avoid relegation. Traditionally, that`s where Cardiff City struggle.
8) If you could take one of our players, who would it be and why?
Tough one. I think Danns and Ambrose would be useful to us right now, but I`m not sure about long term so I`d take Claude Davis to clean the boots, wash the dressing rooms and collect cones on the training pitch.
I`d probably let him go on a free transfer once he apologises unreservedly for being a complete thug.
9) Who do you see as our main threat?
This is undoubtedly Speroni, though I notice he isn’t first choice right now. I don`t mean that in a disrespectful way but opposition keepers have been a repeated nightmare for us, especially ones like him who have a few ‘wondergames` per season. Westwood (Coventry), Lee Camp (Forest) and Fulop (Ipswich) in the last game were inspirational and were integral to us dropping points. I hope Speroni / Price doesn’t do it to us again.
10) Where would you say our current weaknesses are in terms of how you will approach the match?
We will definitely look to score first. If it`s an open game, we have Bellamy, Chopra etc who can get behind McCarthy and co. The longer it stays goalless, or if you go ahead, it will be much more difficult for us.
11) Finally, a prediction please…
I suspect (and hope) our players will be hurt and angry after losing a game we dominated on Saturday. We must be due a little luck so a 2-0 win for Cardiff City. Unfortunately our games are virtually impossible to predict!
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