Sunday, 25 August 2013

Match Preview: Cardiff City vs Manchester City

Pellegrini's boys go hunting for the Bluebirds

By Adam Bailey

Pellegrini's men are on the hunt and with the Magpies already slayed, it's time to butcher the Bluebirds.
The opening day of the Premier League allowed the Chilean godfather to assess his main title rivals. Liverpool almost paid for missed opportunities; Mourinho's Chelsea tika-taka'd their way past Hull and United ruthlessly disposed of Swansea. But the weekend launch was just a support group for Monday's main act. 

Yaya Toure was in great form against Newcastle.
Photo: Official MCFC Facebook

City disposed of Pardew's French legion in a task as straight-forward as putting the bins out. New signing Jesús Navas had Newcastle chasing him like an owner of an escaped dog and the blues looked irresistible in a 4-0 thrashing. Consistency will be key this season, so can we do it again?

The Cardiff City Stadium has become a real fortress for City's next opponents since its inauguration in 2009. 58 wins in 104 home games has booked the Premier League in for a fresh injection of Wales and Malky Mackay's side will be hoping to maintain their fine home record in the top flight this season. 

The Bluebirds suffered a 2-0 defeat to West Ham United in their first Premier League game and will be relying on a ferocious home crowd to steer them to an unlikely victory on Sunday. New signing Steven Caulker will have the unenviable task of manning Sergio Agüero, but it's a job the young England prospect will relish. 

Vincent Kompany is the latest addition to City's growing injury list and Mackay's men will look to target a weakened back line. We're expect to win, but the Cardiff City Stadium could turn out to be an intimidating dungeon hiding a vicious Welsh dragon.

It's been a while since we last played Cardiff, with the last meeting coming in the FA Cup in 1994 when Nathan Blake scored the only goal in a 1-0 win for the Bluebirds. Lets hope we won't have a similar scoreline come Sunday evening!

My thoughts

I was impressed by the calibre on football on show at the weekend. Coutinho, Sturridge and Aspas look like they could form a troublesome trio and of course, Van Persie will be steering United towards the top three once again this season. However, it was City that displayed the highest quality of football on the opening weekend.

Navas and Fernandinho look as if they’ve been here for years. The pace of the Premier League is always something foreigners talk about and it doesn’t look like our new signings are going to have any trouble with it. Having said that, we’ll have to wait and see how Jovetić and Negredo cope with it.

Džeko came in for some criticism following the Newcastle game after a number of squandered opportunities, however, he played magnificently. There’s no doubt Džeko has found confidence under his new manager and he’s going to be a key player for us this season.

Cardiff will be a tough place for any team to go, but I fancy the blues to edge it on Sunday.

Prediction: Cardiff 1 - 2 City 

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(c) The Sky Blue View 2013

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