CHAMPIONSHIP PREVIEW: Cardiff City v Nottingham Forest

Cardiff City will welcome Nottingham Forest to Cardiff City Stadium this Good Friday. The Bluebirds are looking to push their way into a play-off spot while Forest are looking to put more room between them and the relegation places.

The Bluebirds returned to winning ways in their game as they beat bitter rivals Swansea thanks to an Aden Flint header. It was the Bluebirds fist win after a run of three without one, however, Cardiff have only lost once since the arrival of Mick McCarthy. Forest are without a win in six with three draws and three defeats.

The sides have met twice this season with City winning in the reverse league meeting and Forest winning in an FA Cup third round tie. Cardiff have won eight out of the last ten league meetings between the sides.

Curtis Nelson and Perry Ng have recovered from injuries and could feature on Friday. Lee Tomlin, meanwhile, suffered a setback prior to a under 23’s games this week which will delay his return. Jordi Osei-Tutu is back in training, but will not play a part at the weekend.

For Forest defender Joe Worrall is still suffering from a rib injury and is a doubt for the trip to Cardiff. Former Cardiff man Harry Arter is still out with a calf injury. Joe Lolley is also likely out for the season, and Gaeten Bong is another who is a doubt for the trip to Wales.

Ahead of the game, Cardiff Manager Mick McCarthy said:

“I would prefer to be top and they are all chasing me! But considering when we played Bristol, we could have gone fourth or fifth bottom.

“You could sense the change around the place, the confidence. We are now nipping at those in front of us.

“If you’re in the top six, all you worry about is falling out of it.

“Even if you’re in the bottom three, you’re chasing to get out. Fourth or fifth bottom, you don’t want to drop in now.”

Forest Manager Chris Hughton told Nottinghamforest.co.uk:

“The only points in my mind at the moment are in the next game and trying to win that. It is such an unpredictable league this season, with performances and those teams that can beat any team on any given day.

“So many of the results show that and it is very difficult, you don’t know how that run in will be. You look at the teams towards the bottom of the table and any team is capable of putting together a decent run.

“We want to finish the season as well as we can and, at any stage of the season, there are always influences that can affect your thinking. There are players that over a short period of time put some better thoughts into your mind or change your mind about them.

“Also, we would rather go into the start of next season after a decent end to the season. Although there is a gap in between, you can psychologically have that little bit of momentum.”

Prediction: Cardiff City 2 – 0 Nottingham Forest

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