Tag Archives: Kieffer Moore

Championship Preview: Cardiff City v Norwich City

Championship leaders Norwich head to Cardiff on Saturday looking to maintain their four point lead at the top of the table. The two side will be familiar with each other having met at Carrow Road on December 19th, with Norwich winning two goals to nil.

Cardiff manager Neil Harris is under pressure after seeing his side lose four games in a row, a run that has seen The Bluebirds drop to 15th in the table. Norwich have lost just one game in their last nine, a 1-0 defeat at Watford. This run includes seven wins.

Team News

Cardiff are struggling with injuries currently but are hopeful that Wales forward Kieffer Moore will be able to take part this weekend. Full back Greg Cunningham is back training but Saturday’s game comes to soon for him. Cardiff captain Sean Morrison is also likely to miss this match, and Aden Flint (who returned from loan at Sheffield Wednesday this month) will also miss out. On Loan right back Jordi Osei-Tutu came off after 40 minutes of a under 23’s game this week so Leandro Bacuna will continue at right back, whilst Joe Bennett will play a t centre half again.

Cardiff announced this week that Sol Bamba has been diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin lymphoma and will be receiving treatment. Whilst he won’t be part of the match squad Bamba will be supporting his team mates and continuing his role at the clubs academy. Everyone at 24/7 Football send their thoughts to Sol and his family.

Norwich will be without Bali Mumba and Xavi Quintilla for the trip to Cardiff after the pair tested positive for COVID-19. Goal keeper Tim Krul and Adam Idah are both still recovering from the virus and will not be the match squad. Lukas Rupp and josh Martin will also be out for this game both are ill. Marco Stiepermann is suffering from an ear infection and will miss this game.

Manager Thoughts

Neil Harris dismissed that this is a must win game during his pre-match press conference saying:

“It’s not a must-win game, we are not anywhere near that position.

“We have come away from being very close to it to where we are now.

“To get back there we have to put a consistent run of results together. Whether that’s fit players or new signings, that’s vitally important.

“But then, we have still got a group of players who are good enough to compete at the top of this division.

“We are a side capable of putting a run together. We showed that last season and this season as well.

“This weekend is going to be tough but it’s a game we can win. Then we have a run of games where we can build performances and results.”

Norwich Manager Daniel Farke believes that this will not be a easy victory for his side saying:

“Cardiff are a side who know how they pay. Kieffer Moore could come back in, they have an unbelievably experienced coach. Right now, they’re not in the position they want to be but that have potential to win five or six in a row. 

“It will be a difficult away game and they’ll be highly-motivated coming up against the league leaders at home.

“I trust my players and we’re confident in each and every game. Cardiff will want to show a reaction to the first game. We need a very good performance and we are respectful.”

Prediction; Cardiff 0 v 2 Norwich

Cardiff are on a poor run and still without several key players and lacking a cutting edge in front of goal. Norwich should win this game comfortably.

Kick off for this game is 3pm on Saturday 16th of January.

south wales derby match preview

As derby games go there are not many bigger, historic or outright bizarre than the South Wales derby between Cardiff and Swansea. A friendly rivalry for many years at first turned into one of the most heated matches in football.

As welsh clubs playing in the English football league the early derby matches were played with fans mixing and some friendly banter. As the years went on on football hooliganism escalated so did the hatred between the two sets of fans.

A Brief History

Trouble at football games in the UK had been on the rise throughout the 70’s and 80’s and Cardiff and Swansea games were no different. Many football fans will be familiar with Swansea’s Swim Away gesture to Cardiff fans. This all stems from an incident at a match in Swansea in 1988.

As this was pre smart phones and viral videos accounts of the incident vary wildly but after a 2-0 Cardiff win around 30 Cardiff supporters were chased into the water. Police moved the Swansea fans away and dripping wet Cardiff supporters emerged from the waters. The swim away gesture has been used by many ex Swansea players whilst playing against Cardiff.

Swansea player Darren Pratley mocks Cardiff Fans

This season’s first meeting will take place at the Cardiff City Stadium, but without any supporters. It will be the first without any fans at the ground, but for many years away supporters were banned from this fixture.

After years of rising trouble at the derby fixture the FAW finally had enough in 1993, banning away supporters for four years. It came to a head after a match at Ninian Park in 1993, the game has been dubbed the “Battle of Ninian Park”. Swansea fans came to Ninian Park and ripped out seats and threw them at Cardiff supporters. Cardiff supporters responded by invading the pitch to attack the Swansea fans. Former Football Intelligence officer Simon Chivers described it as the worst violence I’ve ever seen.” There were many arrests and several police officers and supporters were injured in one of the darkest days for Welsh football. For the first time in the UK away supporters were banned from attending until 1997.

Thankfully scenes like this are no longer the norm at Cardiff/Swansea games. When fans were allowed to attend away games all fixtures between the sides have been “bubble” games.

Across the years no side has ever won two league meetings in a season. The clubs have won two games in a season, but due to playing in the Welsh Cup, the league double has never been done.

Recent Form

Cardiff have turned their form around winning four straight games. They have scored ten and conceded just one in that run. They have climbed up to 9th place and are just four points from the play-off places.

Swansea, meanwhile, have won three, drawn two and lost one of their last six games. They are in 4th place and only a point behind 2nd placed Bournemouth.

Last season saw a goalless draw at Cardiff while Swansea won 1-0 in their home game. Prior to last season the last derby games came in the Premier League.

Swansea enjoyed a 3-0 win at the Liberty Stadium in Garry Monk’s first game as manager. It was the Bluebirds who won the first ever Premier League game 1-0 with former Swansea player Steven Caulker scoring the only goal.

Cardiff have the edge overall with 44 wins to Swansea’s 36, with 28 draws.

Team News

Harry Wilson is a major doubt for the game with an arm injury picked up during City’s win at Stoke on Tuesday. Osei-Tutu and Tomlin are both still unavailable. With Wilson likely to miss this game Junior Hoilett will be the most likely to step in in.

Morgan Gibbs-White is still out for Swansea but Steve Copper will have no new injury concerns.

Managers Thoughts

Cardiff Manager Neil Harris:

It’s a huge game. Bragging rights are at stake. It’s a massive game. I was watching some footage earlier of the game back in January. The stadium was packed, atmosphere was electric. Both clubs will miss the fans. It’s a great fixture in the football calendar, one of the biggest games of the season in the Championship.

Fans will be missed but it doesn’t take away the importance of it.

We know the importance to the fan base.

Harris was asked if he understood the importance of this game for the Cardiff fans,

Course I do. It’s never lost on me.

In my playing career, they are the best games to play in.

I know the importance to the fan base and that will certainly be mentioned in the changing room. It already has been.

It’s not a joy for people in lockdown in the lead up to Christmas and they can’t watch their team. There’s been a hardship and we have an opportunity to put smiles on faces.

Swansea manager Steve Cooper also spoke about the fans:

“It will be different in terms of the game and atmosphere,

“They were electric atmospheres last season, as anyone who was there will tell you, so we can’t shy away from it, it is different.

“That’s why you cannot compare with previous seasons or previous games.

“But is a game that means an awful lot to supporters, it’s one we really want to win and one we want to really commit to and attack.

“It is for the supporters. I want them to see a team working hard and giving their best because football is so important to so many people.

“It will be a perfect chance to give a bit back and we will be committing to that.”

Key Players

While Kieffer Moore is gaining plaudits for his recent form part of this has been down to the introduction of Mark Harris. Harris has been a revelation since his introduction to the starting line which has seen Cardiff win the last four. Harris has scored one himself but gives defenders more to think about allowing more space for Moore. The Swansea born striker could be the key to unlocking Swansea’s defence.

Andre Ayew has picked up seven goals this season for Swansea. Swansea have only lost one game this season when Ayew has scored. The striker is a big game player and will relish this fixture.

Prediction; Cardiff ? v ? Swansea

This derby is unpredictable at the best of times. Playing behind closed doors will change the dynamic like never before in this fixture. Its likely to be a close game with just a goal in it.

Championship Preview: Watford v cardiff city

Third placed Watford will host Cardiff City this Saturday in the Championship. The match will be played with supporters as Watford is in tier two allowing 2,000 fans to attend the game.

Watford come into this game on the back of a goalless draw at Nottingham Forest. The Hornets have only suffered one loss in their last eleven games. They are unbeaten at home this season taking 19 out of 21 points at Vicarage Road.

Cardiff have back to back home wins against Luton and Huddersfield but pioir to this had only one win in eight games. Cardiff are without an away win in four games drawing twice and losing twice.

The last meetings between the side came in the Premier League in 2018/19. Watford won both matches 5-1 at Cardiff and 3-2 at home. The Bluebirds, however, lead the overall head to head 22 wins to The Hornet’s 21, but Watford have won the last three meetings.

Team News

Watford will be without Nathaniel Chalobah who will miss the match though suspension, picking up a fifth yellow card in midweek. The 10 day isolation for the three players who had positive Covid-19 tests has ended. Adam Masina, Tom Cleverley and Will Hughes have been back in training. Tom Dele-Bashiru, Andre Gray and Isaac Success will all miss this match.

For Cardiff Jordi Osei-Tutu, Lee Tomlin and Isaac Vassell all remain unavailable. Filip Benkovic could return to the squad after an illness. Robert Glatzel came off the bench to score on Tuesday against Huddersfield could be in line to start ahead of Mark Harris.

Managers Thoughts

Watford manager Vladimir Ivic spoke ahead of the game about the need to rotate his squad:

“We know that in this moment with a lot of games we need to rest some players, like you see with Craig [Cathcart] and his hamstring [injury late on against Nottingham Forest].

“We believe that in the next days some of the players will come to help us who have stayed out for different reasons – some of them being injured and some having COVID – so we will see what’s going to happen in the next days.”

Neil Harris spoke about playing in front of fans this weekend, despite Cardiff not being able to have fans back as Welsh Government rules are different to England:

I’m not fussed if Watford fans are there or not. We are not going to see fans back in our stadium, we have spoken about that hindering us.

It is what it is, the Welsh Government have made their decision. Watford fans, not fussed.

Football as a whole needs supporters. I’m quietly pleased for teams that are getting supporters back, every sport needs them. But unfortunately we are not in that position to welcome our fans back.

Does it have an effect? If anything it will spur my players on. It will have more of an away game feel about it.

Speaking about his oppostion this weekend:

Good players. A team that wasn’t expected to be relegated from the Premier League. They have got a massive squad, an embarrassment of riches, but it’s the Championship.

The amount of teams clustering at the top, middle and bottom. People always question the ability in the Championship but it’s as good as ever.

If you finish above Watford then you are going to finish in the top three, or maybe even top two.

But I worry about getting us right and getting in the best possible condition to stop them and affect the game the other way, being proactive and aggressive.

Key Players

For Watford they will be looking for Ismaila Sarr to continue his good form so far this season. Sarr has picked up three goals and two assists, with a Whoscored rating of 7.1. The 22 year old forward also has 3 man of the match performances.

Cardiff will hope the form of Wales striker Kieffer Moore continues. Moore has seven goals for Cardiff and two for Wales this season. With a whoscored rating of 7.34 overall and 7.57 in the Championship. He has won over 10 aerials per game and Cardiff will look to play though the striker.

Prediction: Watford 1-1 Cardiff City

Watford are unbeaten at home and will have fans for the first time in a long time. The extra pressure could tell against a Cardiff team that have gained confidence with two wins in a row. Both teams have quality across the pitch and will be hard to break down.

millwall v Cardiff city preview: return to the LIONS den

Neil Harris returns to former club Millwall this weekend for the first time since leaving in October 2019. Harris enjoyed a successful period in London as both a player and manager. As a player he is Millwall’s all-time record goalscorer with 138 goals across two spells at the club. He took the club into the Championship in 2017 via the play-offs.

Current Form

Millwall currently sit 9th in the Championship with 17 points having only lost two of their 11 matches. Their only defeat in the last five came in a home loss to Huddersfield by three goals to nil. With three draws in their last five they are hard to beat, but are struggling for a winning run.

Cardiff, meanwhile, have two defeats in their last three games with just one win. The Bluebirds have a habit of going behind in games, five of the last six. They often therefore start slow and have to chase games.

The last five league meetings between the sides have been draws. The last win coming for Millwall in 2014, 1-0. With current form this game is likely to be another tight affair. Since 1999 the sides have drawn 11 times.

Team News

Former Cardiff striker Kenneth Zohore will miss the game against his former club with a ankle injury. Midfielder Shane Ferguson is doubtful following being withdrawn after 36 minutes during Northern Ireland’s defeat to Austria. Forward Troy Parrott could return to the squad. He played 45 minutes for the Republic of Ireland under 21’s on Sunday. He also made a brief cameo for the senior side on Wednesday.

Cardiff will be without Lee Tomlin until mid January. Tomlin has had surgery on an ongoing groin issue. Full back Greg Cunningham meanwhile is back in training but this game may come too soon for him. Full back Jordi Osei-Tutu will also be out for at least four weeks, so Cardiff will likely have to play Leandro Bacuna at right back.

Managers Thoughts

Millwall manager Gary Rowett has been glad of the break telling London news Online:

“I’m glad to be going into it [the Cardiff match] off the back of a little bit of a breather. It allows us the chance to at least feel fresh.

“It’s going to be a challenge for the players, just because Cardiff are a good side and it’s Neil and Livers [David Livermore] coming back – their old management team. There’s always that strangeness to it.

“Cardiff are good at what they do. They are trying to play a little bit more but they also have an obvious physical threat that you’ve got to try and deal with.

“They’ve got players like [Harry] Wilson and [Marlon] Pack in there, technical players who move the ball well. It’s a balanced team, like we are.”

The Millwall also boss spoke about his sides home form and how it needs to improve:

“We need to start delivering more wins at home and this is the first one of a group of games which are a tough run. We’ve got a tough-looking run of fixtures over the next period. But the Championship is like that anyway. You’ve got to do your best and try and win it.

“I know Cardiff have maybe not started quite as well as they’d like but that is the same for many teams in the division.”

Neil Harris was asked about his connections to Millwall and how it was disappointing that no fan’s would be at The Den:

Every game is a shame without fans but I understand a Millwall connection. It can work with me or against me. It’s a game of football at the weekend that we want to win.

A lot of similarities in the passion of the fan bases (cardiff and Millwall). Cardiff City Stadium, big games I’ve played there and managed and the fans can be the turning point and I’m sure they would have been a couple of Fridays ago.

The same can be said of Millwall, the fans get behind them and can really spur you on

The Cardiff manager also spoke about the buzz from the returning Welsh players, (Harry Wilson and Kieffer Moore who both scored in Wales’ 3-1 win over Finland):

Yeah! Definitely! Harry and Kieffer have come back into the building with a buzz, Mark Harris, too. (Mark Harris scored for Wales under 21’s)

It lifts the group, lifts our fan base going into Saturday. We feel it and I’m sure the whole of Cardiff City does.

One of Neil Harris’ objectives at Cardiff is to improve the Academy and bring though more youth players. He spoke about his younger players stepping up recently:

Friday was one of the first times we had all the Under-23s, Under-18s, some younger as well, training with us. It was fantastic. It was so good to see. We are a football club that wants to move forward by promoting young players.

We have got to be patient, as I keep saying, but we’ve got some very talented 15, 16 and 17-year-olds that, as soon as they are good enough, I don’t care how old they are, they are in the group.

We have had lads out of school, training with the first team. That’s where we are at, that’s because we believe in good young players coming through.

But that has to run parallel with getting results on a Saturday.

Key Players

For Millwall it is Jed Wallace, who has four goals so far, playing on the right of Millwall’s attacking from three. Speaking ahead of the game about his sides form”

Ultimately it is down to the players, especially myself, to take more responsibility at key moments. We need to show more quality, at times, to turn those 0-0s into 1-0 wins. We don’t need to change too much, we’re doing really, really well.”

For Cardiff they’ll be hoping Harry Wilson carries on from his display for Wales on Wednesday night. It was a stellar performance that even earned praise from Manchester United legend Roy Keane who stated that Wilson’s goal was “outstanding”.

Prediction: Millwall 1-1 Cardiff City

Without any fans at the Den to boost two sides fighting for form, and given recent history this game will only be a draw.

Who has impressed in the EFL Championship so far?

The latest episode of the writers podcast features writer and Cardiff City fan Martin Townley.

We discuss his opinion on which sides have impressed in the EFL Championship so far as well as what he has made of the start to the Premier League season.

Link to the Writers Podcast below: https://soundcloud.com/adam-stephens-425096853/24-7-football-episode-8

In addition, we are also proud to announce that we have been ranked by Feedspot in their Top 40 UK Football Blogs