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Monday, 26 August 2013

EPL - MALAYSIAN OWNED CARDIFF STUNS MANCHESTER CITY IN SHOCK OF THE SEASON

Malaysian backed Cardiff City produced a stunning win over 2011-12 champions Manchester City to claim their first victory in the Premier League.
So much for Manuel Pellegrini insisting that there was no chance of Manchester City underestimating Cardiff. There was little evidence that message got through to Pellegrini's players on an afternoon that was as chastening for Manchester City as it was glorious for Cardiff. The Welsh club's first top flight game for 51 years will live long in the memory after two goals from Fraizer Campbell and another from Aron Gunnarsson delivered a thrilling and totally unexpected victory.
It was a result that would have been impossible to predict, especially after Edin Dzeko put City in front seven minutes into the second half with a wonderful goal. Cardiff could easily have imploded at that point but, to their immense credit, they refused to accept defeat and instead took the game to their opponents.
Gunnarsson brought them level after fine work from the impressive Kim Bo-kyung and from that point on it was all about Campbell. The former Manchester United and Sunderland striker twice headed home from corners, losing his marker Pablo Zabaleta on both occasions. Joe Hart must also take a share of the blame for Campbell's first, with the City goalkeeper guilty of flapping at Peter Whittingham's corner. In a tense finale, Alvaro Negredo scored with a perfectly executed back-post header and almost nicked a late equaliser that would have broken Cardiff hearts.
Full of endeavour throughout, Cardiff had departed at half-time to warm and richly deserved applause from the home supporters. Manchester City huffed and puffed but were restricted to few meaningful attempts on goal in an opening 45 minutes when they struggled to play with the same freedom and fluidity that characterised their thumping victory over Newcastle on Monday night. That was a complement to a Cardiff side that worked tirelessly to get numbers behind the ball and close their opponents down. The way Ben Turner threw his body in the way of a Yaya Touré shot epitomised Cardiff's spirit.
The home side also caused Manchester City a few problems of their own. With Javier García and Joleon Lescott forming a makeshift central defensive partnership in the absence of the injured Vincent Kompany, Cardiff looked to exploit Campbell's pace in behind. It was a tactic that brought some joy, in particular in the 43rd minute, when Gunnarsson's lofted pass released the striker. Campbell got away from García but, under pressure from Lescott, was unable to trouble Hart. Within 60 seconds Campbell was bearing down on goal again, this time after a poor back header from García. Hart, however, rushed from his line to block Campbell's shot.
It was the visitors, though, who struck first through a goal of sublime quality. Fernandinho rolled a ball into Sergio Agüero's feet and, with a deft backheel, the Argentinian found Dzeko, who had dropped into a pocket of space about 25 yards out. One sumptuous swing of the right-boot later and the ball was arching beyond David Marshall and into the top corner.
Within eight minutes Cardiff were level. Kim escaped on the right flank – far too easily from Manchester City's point of view – and delivered a low centre that Campbell swept towards goal. Hart blocked with his feet but Gunnarsson was first to the loose ball and gleefully rammed home. If that was not exactly in the script, it was nothing compared to what followed as Campbell twice scored with headers to leave Manchester City floundering. Negredo gave the visitors some hope with a late goal but this was Cardiff's day.




THE GUARDIAN

LINEUP, BOOKINGS (0) & SUBSTITUTIONS (6)

Cardiff City

  • 01 Marshall
  • 02 Connolly
  • 03 Taylor
  • 04 Caulker
  • 06 Turner
  • 07 Whittingham
  • 08 Medel
  • 13 Kim Bo-Kyung (Mutch - 90' )
  • 17 Gunnarsson
  • 39 Bellamy (Cowie - 83' )
  • 10 Campbell (Cornelius - 90' )

Substitutes

  • 32 Lewis
  • 05 Hudson
  • 16 Noone
  • 18 Mutch
  • 19 Cowie
  • 09 Cornelius
  • 23 Maynard

Manchester City

  • 01 Hart
  • 05 Zabaleta
  • 06 Lescott
  • 14 Garcia
  • 22 Clichy
  • 15 Navas (Nasri - 55' )
  • 21 Silva
  • 25 Fernandinho (Milner - 77' )
  • 42 Toure
  • 10 Dzeko (Negredo - 69' )
  • 16 Aguero

Substitutes

  • 30 Pantilimon
  • 13 Kolarov
  • 33 Nastasic
  • 07 Milner
  • 08 Nasri
  • 17 Rodwell
  • 09 Negredo
Ref: Probert
Att: 27,068

MATCH STATS


Possession56%44%90minsCardiff CityManchester City

Shots

916

On target

65

Corners

38

Fouls

29

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