Tuesday, September 30, 2008


CARDIFF CITY produced their first home win since opening day to ease tensions as they hit back from the weekend reverse against Birmingham with a 2-1 victory more West Midlands visitors, this time in the shape of the other CCFC - Coventry City.

In a surprisingly open and exciting contest, The Bluebirds got home thanks to goals from their much maligned strikeforce as Jay Bothroyd grabbed his first City goal while Ross McCormack netted his 4th spot kick of the season to take his tally to 7. It left Cov to reflect on a late Dann consolation and the controversy of a 'goal that never was' as Freddy Eastwood thought he levelled it at 1-1 but had it cancelled a minute later as a linesmen correctly pointed out a handball in a Cardiff attack before The Sky Blues ever broke downfield.

It's been a rocky week. City's Carling Cup defeat in Swansea and the equally impotent first Championship defeat of the season to Birmingham sent financial markets into turmoil. President Bush appealed for calm and launched a rescue plan but once boss Dave Jones and skipper Darren Purse started a spat, after boss slated captain for his error in Birmingham's opening goal, that failed causing more global turmoil. However peace broke out, Jones played Purse and the world markets stabilised then rallied. And you thought it was all about a credit crunch and global debts eh?

However changes were made, Steve McPhail (after suspension) and Mark Kennedy (after injury) started with the out of sorts Paul Parry was rested to the bench partly due to a hamstring problem and joined by Miguel Comminges was given a break after suffering at left back. City were Heaton, McNaughton-Purse-Johnson-Kennedy, Whittingham-Rae-McPhail-Ledley, Bothroyd-McCormack. Dave Jones returned to old ways and never employed a single substitute but, for the record, they were Enckleman-Comminges-Gypes-Johnson-Parry.

Hands Up all those who think our City Kid

mascot could be better than Eddie Johnson?

Chris Coleman's named the same side for the 4th successive game in Westwood, Fox-Ward-Dann- Osbourne, Doyle-Tabb-Gunnarsson-Morrison, Eastwood-McKenzie - no surprise when they were unbeaten in those games although 3 were draws. They have a look of also rans about them, indeed their league record is now 3 wins, 3 draws, 3 defeats, so it was a game you expected Cardiff to triumph even if it was anything but easy.

In fact, when the half-time whistle blew, City had a 1-0 lead but it was simply luck that they weren't instead trailing. Coventry will be kicking themselves for failing to convert guilt edged chances in the opening 20 minutes as Cardiff were nervous, lacking confidence, making errors and being cut open. A well worked move saw Doyle yards out with only Heaton to beat but he stabbed an effort straight at him, the impressive Freddy Eastwood did likewise with a header and then Clinton Morrison fired wide from close range. All these moves and chances, uncharacteristically, were coming on SuperKev's side but he soon settled down. Coventry then wasted an even better chance as Steve McPhail turned back towards goal 30 yards out and, shockingly, put McKenzie clean through on goal, his dragged shot beating a sprawling Heaton but missing the far post by a foot.

City had rare moments but just weren't fluent and Coventry were buzzing. The diminutive Jay Tabb - I wasn't sure if the 21 on his back was his squad number of his 2' 1" height" - was in the thick of it as City took a while to get to grips. The tensions were reflected in the crowd which was just about the quietest I've ever heard 16,312 - the 312 in that probably representative of the Sky Blues following.

When Cardiff got forward, it was perhaps summed when McCormack and Bothroyd both ran wide of goal to chase the same through ball taking them both away from the goalmouth, Bothroyd got there but his ball across goal was then placed between the two banks of advancing City men and a golden chance disappeared. Some of the forward play was of Route One dimensions rather than pass and play, keeping it down, City understandably looking short of confidence.

McCormack, however, looked fantastic, running everywhere for the cause, looking dangerous on the ball and he seemed to have a shoot on sight policy dangerous on the ball making Cov's keeper Westwood produce a smart save, fire another just wide and an audacious 30 yard flick on the turn sailed just over. However he was also being blocked with distance shots when he had options but it was refreshing, at last, to see a City striker having a go instead of always laying it off.

Then, just past the half hour mark, double relief as not only did Cardiff take the lead with a quality goal but it was also JAY BOTHROYD opening his Bluebirds account. Bothroyd's career scoring record is not prolific but he has barely mustered a shot with City so far and had been feeling pressure. Maybe it was appropriate he netted against a former club whose fans were giving him some stick but what a goal.

A Coventry punt downfield, Roger Johnson headed back towards the Bob Bank touchline where, Peter Whittingham, sent away an outstanding waist high pass past Coventry defenders and BOTHROYD showed searing pace to get away and then behind Cov's flailing defenders and plant a low shot home in front of the Canton Stand. Pure quality. Bothroyd ran to the Grandstand followed but just about all the team, making a SHHHH! gesture - maybe to send a message to the critics. As long as he and City keep scoring, he'll be surprised to find out he won't have any - it's a simple formula Jay!

The goal was the boost both the fans and team required and City finally settled down to playing some good quality football but they really should have doubled their advantage as quick passing and movement involving half the side saw McNaughton send over the perfect invitation for Joe Ledley in front of goal but a defender and himself somehow saw the header sent over.

Half-time: CCFC 1 CCFC 0

The returning 'legends' this game were Damon Searle and Cohen Griffith and, once again, along with 75% of the ground, I didn't have a clue what the pitchside chat was with Richard Sheppard and themselves, I guess we'll get an adequate p.a. at the new ground.

Coventry returned early for the 2nd half with Marcus Hall replacing Ward, City returned with Darren Purse holding and stretching the back of his right calf, something he did several times in the second half, occasionally signaling to the bench as well but he lasted the full 90 and did well again although sponsors naming him man of the match probably had more to do with the goings-on of the past 24 hours as he wasn't quite City's best performer - choose between Kennedy, Bothroyd and McCormack for that accolade.

City's problem with a lack of scoring expertise is that they can't kill games when in the ascendency and that showed straight from the restart as Purse was denied volleying a free-kick that drifted across the box and was denied only by an outstanding Westwood tip-over then McCormack produced majesty on the edge of the box, produced skills of the highest order to turn Coventry's markers inside out only to hit his shot straight at Westwood with the goal inviting but what class.

Then came the moment that the game will perhaps be best remembered for - a goal that never was. City were attacking, I didn't initially realise there had been a clear handball by a Coventry defender (play was the opposite end of the pitch to me) but I certainly saw the linesman instinctively raise his flag only to drop it again, a couple of Cardiff players stopped. Coventry, though, quickly moved the ball through midfield to Freddy Eastwood who showed all of his qualities by enticing Purse into a lunging challenge, skipping around the outside of him then comprehensively beating Heaton inside his near post.

The ref awarded the goal and pointed back to halfway, Eastwood, his team-mates and the travelling support celebrated joyously but Dave Jones and a couple of City players were furious, a couple of them making their feelings known to the linesman. Coventry shaped up for the restart with howls of derision echoing about and it appeared that Cardiff players got the ref to speak to the lino. The chat went on for almost a minute then, incredibly, the goal was chalked off and City were awarded a free-kick 30 yards out from Coventry's goal.

The Sky Blues were now furious, Coleman almost losing it on the touchline, one of the men booked and it could have been worse as a City forward narrowly missed connecting with the free-kick as it dropped. Coleman was beside himself, City fans tried their best to cheer him up with booming chants of "You Jack B*stard". The right decision prevailed but what a mess around it.

I thought Coventry may have felt an injustice and that it would inspire them but instead it was Cardiff now finding their best form and taking the game to Coventry. Jay Bothroyd really should have buried his and City's tally when he was given a free header in front of goal but with all the goal to aim at, he nodded it downwards at Westwood who still showed outstanding reactions to clear with his feet. The next attack saw another move down the left find Roger Johnson, his effort on the turn hammered wide.

Coventry threw on their final two subs but still it was City pummelling them and perhaps it proved out strikeforce still isn't quite right as a succession of quality set pieces, crosses and moves produced little end result. Mark Kennedy who was enjoying himself sent over the ball of the night - a sizzling low ball which took out the entire Cov defence - but Bothroyd, somehow, failed to connect with it in front of goal only for City to enjoy their own let off when one of our central defenders (I suspect Johnson so Dave Jones won't name him!) dropped off Leon Best and allowed him a free header. Thankfully, he put wide when he really should have hit the target.

However with 7 minutes to go, it felt game over as another quality move saw Bothroyd slip the ball outside, when looking to shoot, to send Joe Ledley away who got bundled over. I don' know if everyone's the same but such has been the quality of ROSS McCORMACK' spot kicks, I don't doubt that he is going to net them. Sure enough, Westwood went the right way but McCormack hit it low, the power and precision ensuring Cov's excellent keeper was nowhere near it really. No more than McCormack deserved on a night where he was everywhere and truly shone. His 7th of the season before City have played 10 league games and he's now 2nd leading scorer in the Championship - who says we may not have a 20 goal striker ... as long as we keep getting penalties?!

McCormack pen makes it 2-0

That should have been it but Cardiff City just don't do easy wins, do they? Sure enough, 45 seconds to go, a quality ball sent wide, Marcus Hall sent over a fantastic cross and DANN headed home powerfully from close range. He was completely unmarked ... who let him go?


There were mini palpitations as 5 minutes of added time were found and Coventry sent in a mini bombardment of crosses and long throws but although City were guilty of dropping back and not pushing out on clearance, they dealt with it quite comfortably even if it was hardly a convincing way to close the game.

Overall, it was a great game to watch but it wasn't a great City showing. The players responded but a better side may well have put us out of sight with the glaring chances Coventry wasted in the first half. City's midfield still doesn't look as strong or efficient as it should be - I'd bring someone in yesterday if it were possible - and despite no qualms about the excellent showing and goals by McCormack and Bothroyd, Freddy Eastwood showed me they type of forward the City side are missing with his intelligent play in and around the box. I'm pretty sure he would have feasted on some of City's crosses and balls in the box and I do feel it may well hold City back in the long run.

For now however, the win is to be savoured, 7th and out of the play-offs by goal difference, behind 3rd by 1 win is not a bad place to be after 9 games while Ali sending Chris Coleman home with "Hit The Road Jack" playing over the tannoy was divine. City now need to push on starting with one final test before an international break this Saturday lunchtime at in-form Blackpool. They must go in search of victory.


Some footage just taken of the stadium with its glorious external cladding (!!) having its final pieces fitted and retail park developments have appeared on YouTube.

Took a look via this link:



Click the link for the Echo's video review of City's defeat at home to Brum, the Darren Purse attack on Dave Jones and a preview of tomorrow's home encounter with Coventry. There's a bit on Swansea too but you can skip past it if you wish.



Talking to media in the West Midlands, Coventry City forward FREDY EASTWOOD made it known how he would have joined Cardiff City ... if only they'd have asked.

The Welsh international admits this morning how he was interested in coming but that he felt it was only paper talk and no enquiry was made.

Eastwood, of course, made his feelings about this known at the time but Dave Jones passed on him, making the now hideous quotes that the calibre of strikers he had in mind were all better than Eastwoood. How stupid, stubborn and ignorant does that now appear?

Fredy has not been a big hit yet for Cov. The £1.2M capture from Wolves netted only his 2nd Championship goal for the Sky Blues on the weekend in a 1-1 draw at Coventry but that's prolific by Cardiff's standards. He is exactly the 'in the box' predator that Jones didn't bring to this club at all and which is a badly missing feature of his latest squad.

One thing we do know is that Eastwood will continue to grab goals. Eddie Johnson doesn't threaten to score at all for City while Jay Bothroyd is now 1 goal in 29 games and none yet for City. There were signed after Fredy was snubbed so presumably are the men Dave Jones feels are so much better??? I'd laugh if it wasn't so serious.
Coventry City Banter


With Cardiff City struggling for form and goals and being hit by weekend home defeat, Dave Jones has openly pondered about some players not in prime form while others have been blamed for errors so what, if anything, does he have in mind - especially in a group of players, his signings, that give him few - if any - credible alternatives in key areas?

Speculation is that there are two certain changes for tonight's home game with Coventry City, the kind of clash that already feels vital and must win for the Bluebirds.

- Steve McPhail will return after his one game suspension for an altogether silly red card at Swansea. Surely McPhail is one of those "certain players" which Darren Purse had in mind when he said others never get criticised.
- Paul Parry is also due to be an absentee through injury. So poor have his recent displays been that it's hardly a miss anyway and will be accommodated by Joe Ledley reverting to his usual role and a stop gap show in central midfield against Birmingham City last weekend.

The biggest question is will Darren Purse be dropped for Gabor Gypes who has been unable to get a game since signing last month? One national daily paper - The Mirror - says he will be but that can only be speculation. However, as well as he has played, Purse errors have contributed to the opener conceded against Birmingham and also Derby's goal last week and I'm sure Dave Jones had this in mind when making his comments. It will be interesting to see what does unfold this evening.

Other options could be Heaton for Enckleman. The Finnish keeper did well at Swansea last week, Heaton has had little to do yet not truly convinced and some feel Enks would have saved at least one of Birmingham's goals.

It is up front where Dave Jones has his biggest problems though closely followed by midfield. However with Parry injured and Eddie Johnson looking clueless, the Bothroyd-McCormack partnership where neither appears to want to play as a striker, will surely continue.

In midfield, Darcy Blake has jst returned from injury, Riccy Scimeca is still injured and Gavin Rae is playing while possibly not fully fit yet Dave Jones thinks we are ok here until January!! Again, his options for change are near non-existent.

Maybe one final question is will our "Plan A, no Plan B" manager actually change the system? 4-5-1 may be more suited to the personnel currently at his disposal. It's a negative system but Swansea showed its effectiveness last Tuesday. It's also a shocking admission of the flaws in Dave Jones' squad if we do it but City ultimately have to perform better and play to the strengths and it's hard top justify 4-4-2 with the way City are set up.

All the answers will unravel this evening? Just hoping City get a boost and result. Somehow though, I'm expecting a dour and cagey, few thrills, occasion. That's how it's been lately.

Monday, September 29, 2008


Pretty dramatic as all is clearly unhappy around the club and Keith Cooper seems to be feeling the heat of the feedback/comments being thrown his way.

It also reviews the latest poor performance and reverse against Birmingham, includes an interview with radio pundit Mark Bright who was at the game and tries to look ahead to tomorrow's game against Coventry City.

Download or listen here:


Dave Jones is a man with very thin skin. Unable to handle criticism as shown with continuing media jousting and even falling with the national team boss, he has generally been supportive of his players no matter what.

No criticism for the manner in which Paul Parry jilted Wales, no comment at all about Steve McPhail's diving in challenges which conceded the free-kick that gave Swansea a winner and then another that got him sent off and suspended, open trust in Eddie Johnson (a leading contender for worst City signing ever) and no naming of certain players who have clearly under-performed recently for The Bluebirds.

It was therefore a surprise that Jones went out of his way to name Darren Purse as culprit for Birmingham's opener last Saturday by telling the press corps, "Darren fell asleep for the first goal and let McFadden run off him because he thought he was offside but you can’t do that in and around your box. We switched off and it was a nothing goal, Darren’s held his hands up but it was a sloppy goal to give away."

Meanwhile, the culprit for the second goal wasn't named when clearly, a midfielder never marked Quincy at a throw and allowed him all the time to take aim and fire in a free shot.

It's not the first time Jones has named Purse while avoiding criticising others. I took it as a sign Jones was thinking of dropping Purse for Gypes when Coventry visit tomorrow evening but Darren was clearly upset and came out fighting in response about it to the media at a press conference today.

"If I do something wrong I will always hold my hand up in the dressing room but I don’t need it emblazoned all over the place for the whole world to see. That is something that disappointed me." said Purse.

The skipper is also unhappy at the double-standards of boss as he continued, “There’s only certain players that do get mentioned by name at certain times. Maybe it’s something that will come out in the wash but when things are said in the dressing room they should stay in the dressing room. I think things get dealt with better that way, hopefully we can then address them together without getting other people involved.” He ended by telling the press pack who asked if he would confront Jones, "I’m sure that will happen".

Hopefully they will resolve the matter quickly and I'm sure they will but it does make you wonder it's a telling sign of a club that is feeling the pressure and realises it has problems. It is an unbelievable double standard by Dave Jones who expresses indignation when anyone in the media dares to criticise him or his players, no matter how justified, yet it's seemingly ok to do it himself. And I feel for Purse who has been one of our very best performers in recent games so it must be galling to be singled out by your manager while half your team-mates who either haven't performed or look inadequate get defended by him.

However you can't deny he was at fault for Birmingham's opener last weekend and he was almost certainly at fault for Derby's goal the weekend before so the pressure is on ... it seems to be showing.
BBC News

CARDIFF CITY 1 BIRMINGHAM CITY 2 - how the media saw it?

McLeish: Ross decision to join Cardiff was right oneWalesOnline

Cardiff striker problems put into sharp focusWalesOnline

Second city spoils Jones' day againWalesOnline

Purse blamed for first league defeatWalesOnline

Jones proud of spiritSkySports


‘We need goals from all areas of the team’WalesOnline

Football: HE'S GHANA BE A BIG HITMirror.co.uk

McLeish Makes Case for DefenceBuzzle

Solid Birmingham show resilience at CardiffBirmingham Post

McLeish delighted at Quincy's impact on Birmingham CityBirmingham Post

Quincy helps Blues to Cardiff winGhana Football Association, Ghana

Quincy key for Blues brothersSunday People

Cardiff 1 Blues 2 - verdictexpressandstar.com

McLeish is rewarded as Blues win in CardiffDaily Mail

Blues stay in touch with WolvesSkySports

Quincy Owusu-Abeyie sinks CardiffTimes Online

Jones hails Cardiff passion playBBC Sport

Quincy responds to snub in styleGhana Broadcasting Corporation, Ghana

Alex McLeish's Birmingham City 'shake-up' pays dividends with ...Telegraph.co.uk


Cardiff City's uninspiring unbeaten start to the season - consisting of 5 draws and only 2 wins against relegation threatened clubs - came ended as 2nd placed Birmingham City departed Ninian Park with all 3 points having coasted to a 2-1 victory, both their goals coming in the first half before Ross McCormack grabbed a 'too little, too late' consolation in the dying minutes with what was City's sole meaningful effort on goal for the entire game.

It's a week to forget coming after the horror show in Swansea but, for City, the questions remain the same and you wonder if Dave Jones and his squad have the answers within them? This was another afternoon where Cardiff had plenty of the ball, worked hard and ran about a lot but ultimately showed no guile, craft or cutting edge quality coming through midfield and especially in its forward play. The effort and work-rate was there, without question, but there was an obvious lack of belief both on the pitch and in the stands.


The powers within Ninian Park's corridors have been deluding themselves about the quality of this squad and it showed with today's selections in which Dave Jones had only 2 changes from Jackland - the formality of Jay Bothroyd replacing the indescribable Eddie Johnson while, with only 3 central midfielders on the books (with McPhail suspended and Scimeca injured), Joe Ledley was pushed into that area. The sub's bench - Enckleman, 3 defensive players and Eddie Johnson as the only forward told us there were simply no other options for the manager. For the record, it was Heaton, McNaughton-Purse-Johnson-Comminges, Whittingham-Rae-Ledley-Parry, McCormack-Bothroyd. Subs were Enckleman, Blake, Gypes, Kennedy, Johnson.

Birmingham, backed by a surprisingly small number (fewer than 700 fans) had a shock home loss to Blackpool last weekend but are 5 points clear of 3rd place after 8 games helped by 10 points from the 4 awaydays so far. Defensively strong like Cardiff, they enjoy more quality further upfield as evidenced by McFadden and Jerome starting with Marcus Bent and Kevin Phillips on the bench, any of whom would walk into City's side in its present state. It was a lucky escape though for Dave Jones that Marcus Bent walked out on him for the Brummies having agreed a deal. He would be another who wouldn't get us goals but would have seen City waste £1M, you have to seriously question Dave Jones' judgement of strikers. Their side were Taylor, Murphy-Ridgewell-Jaidi-Parnaby, Larsson-Agustien-Quincy-Carsley, Jerome-McFadden.


The game was effectively won and lost inside the first four minutes as that was the time it took Paul Parry to waste a sitter by heading straight into the arms of Taylor then City's defence to slow to react to an innocuous through ball leaving McFADDEN to plant a similar opener past Heaton with vain appeals for offside when, in reality, Darren Purse lost his man. All far too easy I'm afraid and more of that was to come, Birmingham celebrated in near silence from a stunned crowd.

City did fight back but it was more in hope than expectation. They were backed by the support but not at the same volume levels as normal and they did little to suggest they were going to score. The best moment came when Rae saw his effort blocked near the line, the subsequent corner was cleared but sent back with interest by Joe Ledley who shot into the ground forced Taylor to tip over on the stretch but that was it for a half of generally one way pressure. McCormack twice beat an advancing Taylor but found no support in the middle with Bothroyd and Whittingham failing to get there first time and his shot, with nobody available, drifting over later. City enjoyed a number of corners and free-kicks, which seemed to be their only hope, as they looked to Purse and Roger Johnson coming up in support but I don't recall any all afternoon causing problems other than that Ledley shot although Johnson had one blocked on the line by Carsley in the first half. It was predictable and almost football's equivalent of painting by numbers, Birmingham more than happy to absorb it.

Then four minutes before the interval, the killer blow. A simple throw in, QUINCY had nobody near him so shot across goal outside the box, his effort was not fantastic but somehow had the beating of Heaton as it found the opposite corner when I would have expected a save. They almost made it three as well with McFadden's inswinging corner grazing the top of the crossbar. At half-time, a small kid got it in the net doing the same thing to win £200. That was almost the biggest cheer from City fans but it was bettered when the ref elbowed Larsson in the face and sent him crashing to the floor, good work fella!

Half-time: Cardiff 0 Birmingham 2, game over!

As the teams re-emerged with Ali playing Panic by The Smiths with his punchline of "Hang The DJ, Hang The DJ, Hang The DJ" as Dave Jones himself resumed his arms folded stance, I think most City fans wanted the half to pass quickly and painlessly while the Bob Bank Terracers in the 18,304 crowd could at least enjoy a warm sunny afternoon. It was painless but numbing. With little meaningful action, it did drag on a bit so many left long before the end, our fate having been long accepted.

I expected City to come back fighting with renewed urgency and vigour but once the first five minutes passed then, if anything, they got even worse. Whittingham had an early half chance but the crowd were mainly reduced to watching in silence, talking to each other or jeering Cameron Jerome (for ignorantly wondering in the newspapers why he gets no respect from City fans when he wastes no opportunity to talk down his former club so earns no respect) and more so for Bent. So toothless were City that some were pining for Eddie Johnson to come on. The inadequacies of the sub's bench were realised in a game going nowhere for Cardiff that Dave Jones made no tactical changes all afternoon or substitutions until just 15 minutes remained when a double change took place as Eddie Johnson and Mark Kennedy replaced the disappointing Parry and even more disappointing Comminges as the panto theme continued in the stands as Bent appeared for the final 15 while Jerome was taken off shortly after.

City defend a first-half free-kick

McCORMACK woke up a few of us by getting so close with a glancing header which was a fraction over before with just 4 minutes to go, he scored a beauty cutting inside a defender and hitting a powerful 20 yard angled drive across Taylor. It was the first non-penalty goal scored by any City forward for almost 12 hours - an awful record - but McCormack's 6th of the season ... Bothroyd, Parry and Johnson have still barely threatened to score, let alone achieve it. The Scotsman waved his arms to whip up the crowd for a final onslaught but even with 4 minutes added, it just didn't come although the hapless Eddie Johnson was close to getting a foot on the end of a lofted Kennedy ball as it bounced through to Taylor.

Dave Jones' post-match unintentionally humourous comments about being pleased with the response after Swansea and all that was missing was winning - how about drawing as well Dave? Truth is, City were limited, painfully limited. Defence didn't have a great deal to do but helped lose the game by completely switching off for both goals. Midfield didn't create and too many of them are not reaching the standards they did. Joe Ledley very quiet again, what on earth has happened to Paul Parry and, collectively, they play too narrow with the wide men constantly coming inside with, or for, the ball. Up front, Bothroyd works hard but City need far more than that while McCormack is trying his hardest but must lament not having a more able partner.

Cardiff dropped back to 11th and into the mid-table obscurity this side yet again look destined to be. However, I'm sure the optimists will point out that we're still only a point from the play-offs ... even if we're a million miles from the Premier League. The fact Birmingham could take the points in 2nd gear and never remotely looking in any danger was galling but I'm sure they'll do that to other sides as well. How City can out right their problems without getting a midfield or forward loan of quality and there's no suggestion they'll do anything before January, I really don't know. They will, though, get an immediate chance as soon as Tuesday night at home to Coventry to give home fans something to celebrate. That sole Ninian Park victory on opening day vs Southampton is but a distant memory and with our impotency, who's confident that wait will end?

Sunday, September 28, 2008


Today's News of the World - famous for its endless transfer speculation for deals that never happen - suggest that Cardiff City's local boy midfielder JOE LEDLEY heads their shopping list for the January window at a cool £8M.

There are, however, a couple of problems here;
1. It is speculation
2. The likelihood of Spurs director Commolli and boss Ramos staying at a club currently bottom and adrift for much longer is not looking great.
3. If it's a tough central midfielder they want, then is Joe really their man?

Here's the story from the paper:

TOTTENHAM sporting dierctor Damien Comolli may be skating on thin ice at White Hart Lane but he is already making plans for the January transfer window.And top of the shopping list is Welsh midfielder

Joe Ledley.The Cardiff City star, 21, has been the subject of bids from Wolves, Everton and most recently Stoke but Spurs will try to finally break the Championship club’s resolve in the next transfer window.Boss Juande Ramos, who appears to have doubts about Jermaine Jenas, believes he needs a tough central midfielder — but the price for Ledley is likely to be £8million.

Saturday, September 27, 2008


Some cracking pics here of what looks like a typical Kairdiff Friday Night!


"City fans sound more unhappy than I look"
(any excuse to use that photo!)
Dave Jones has shrugged his shoulders and been a little sarcastic (just for a change eh?) following the reaction to Cardiff City's inept performance and defeat at Swansea in the Carling Cup while looking ahead to tomorrow's tough Championship home clash with Birmingham.
The problem is, whether Jones wishes to remain in denial or not, is that the summer signings do not appear to have improved City at all, the team haven't been playing well and being unbeaten in the league is one thing but when your only victories are against teams in 22nd and bottom while goals are in shorter supply than mortgages, the overall prognosis is not promising.
Jones also gives his thoughts on American loan from Fulham, Eddie Johnson - whose 2 Carling Cup performances for City will rank amongst the worst ever seen by a Bluebirds striker.




ALL THE 2's - 22

He may have scored just 3 times in 113 outings for Cardiff City but midweek saw Glenn Loovens net in only his 2nd match for Celtic during a Scottish League Cup win at Kilmarnock.

Loovens has had to bide his time with The Hoops playing only when injury or suspension permits. He made a debut last month but is now on a mini run with regular centre half Gary Caldwell suspended for a straight red card. Having won that cup game following a good win last weekend in SPL, Loovens has impressed both times and today faces Aberdeen knowing that another stromng display gives him every chance of inclusion in Celtic's Champions League opener at Villareal in Spain next Tuesday.

Here Glenn gives his thoughts about this and talks about watching Celtic while a City player last season.

Loovens has chance to stake a claim for European inclusion

The Herald

Friday, September 26, 2008


The Cardiff City Phone In still harks back to The Bluebirds car crash display in Jackland and looks ahead to tomorrow's home clash with Birmingham City.



Robbo, at the age of just 28, has officially announced his retirement after failing to recover from summer knee surgery having made his last appearence for Swindon Town in March 2008. He made Cardiff City supporters aware in private when attending a recent Ninian Park fixture but now the news is official.

The player had a decent, but chequered career. Starting out at Cardiff City, he showed plenty of promise and potential - and I recall how he turned Man United's Wes Brown inside out when also scoring in a friendly vs Man United - but he was at the club at a time when finances were tighter than a trumpeter's bum cheeks hitting a top note, and with Robert Earnshaw also emerging, they could not afford to have both on the books.

Roberts therefore was sold to Exeter City for just £5,000 when he was 20 having scored 3 times in 6 starts for City but many more substitute appearences.

His subsequent clubs - Exeter, Bristol City and Swindon Town - all saw a player with problems as he had injury troubles and battled alcohol addiction but he also produced the goods scoring at around 1 in every 3 or 4 games .... what Cardiff City would give for a player who could produce anywhere near that at the moment!!

On a personal note, I met Christian Roberts when he was at City and we had one fantastic night when I sat next to him at a Player of the Year Awards. After he left the club, I also had the very occasional chat and drink with him as he frequented The Village Inn in Pentwyn with his lifelong friends ... where I have to say, I only ever saw him having a quiet drink and was shocked to learn of him needing rehab in later life but he's now moved on from that.

Shame to hear about any player packing it in early, especially a local boy who is a genuinely nice guy. He did well for himself but it's a pity he didn't do even better. Good Luck with his future.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


Steve Tucker, writing in today's South Wales Echo, penned one of its most critical judgements on the state of affairs on the pitch at Ninian Park following Tuesday's meek surrender to Swansea City of all teams.

Problem is, critical as it may bem, there's very little in it to disagree with!



Giggsy gave an excellent interview on BBC Radio this week. Of most interest to Bluebirds followers was his comment that the team whose results he always looks for after Manchester United are those of Cardiff City. Once a Cardiff Boy .... .... ....

However he also talked about the emerging talent in the Welsh national side. Read on at link.


Wednesday, September 24, 2008


If you enjoy self harm, this is the show for you.

The Cardiff City Phone In hosts an inquest into City's soul destroying Carling Cup defeat at Swansea City. You'll hear me sounding thoroughly miserable about it half way through.

SWANSEA CITY 1 CARDIFF CITY 0 (Carling Cup) in pictures

A few from last night's game in which Cardiff City told us pre-game how this was for the fans and bragging rights before proceeding to roll over and submit ... although it doesn't help when the club failed to get the right squad or men this summer. Gutted.

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Wales Online picks the bones of last night's Swansea City demolition of Cardiff City which, naturally, isn't good listening for City fans.

Link to video interview:

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Video (Low!) Highlights of Jacks beating Cardiff City

Not one I'll be watching again but here you go if interested



Here's a few photos taken yesterday afternoon on the Leckwith Hill side of the Cardiff City stadium looking at it from the fast developing retail park.

On the retail park, Costco has been open for a few weeks but they're joined on Monday week (October 6th) by the opening of an Asda store with petrol available too. A host of fast few outlets are opening there as well including Costa Coffee, Subway and more as well as a Pub/Resturant with a balcony although nobody has claimed that yet. Another unit, JJB Sports Shop with full Gym/Fitness Centre, looks ready to open shortly as well.

But it's the stadium where our interest lies so click below link & check it out.

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Swansea City vs Cardiff City - the day has arrived

Six years after their last meeting (a FAW Premier Cup game), 9 years after their last 'real' clash and 25 years or so since the sides were both in the second tier, Swansea City and Cardiff City finally come head to head.

Not as important as the Championship, both sides are likely to make changes for a Carling Cup (although minmial I'm sure), it will still mean everything to the fans especially with the country talking about it and the game going out live on Sky tv.

I'm getting ready shortly for a pre-game bevvy in Canton before the 1,460 of us Cardiff City followers able to attend head in dry coaches for police escort all the way to and from Swansea. Not my ideal experience but has to be done.

Here's just a few pre-game previews

NME STILL LOVE DEVO - after 30 Years!

Yep, the boys still got it ... as if I didn't know!

And check this NME quote from The Hives who also put in a blistering show, we're "looking forward to seeing DEVO perform Saturday's headlining set. DEVO are our heroes so we're very excited to see them".


... there's as much publicity on the front pages as the back ones.

Swansea apparently haven't sold out, Cardiff are allowed less than half their allocation and just 1,500 fans who are being bussed and escorted 'door-to-door' yet comedians suggest Ross Kemp should be at The Liberty filming one of his Gangs at War programmes and South Wales Polcie have to issue advance 'behave yourselves' statements.

To Norah & The Whale, oh and it's Fun, Fun- Fu-u-u-nnnn!


Monday, September 22, 2008





Saturday, September 20, 2008


Cardiff City were 6th place with 6 goals scored after 6 games but now it's all the 7's (7 games, 7 goals, 7th place) after a 1-1 draw at Derby County's Pride Park who lie 20th. City remain unbeaten but it's now 5 draws and the only Championship wins this term are against two of the bottom three sides.

Cardiff's lack of cutting edge is undoing all their resolute work in defence and midfield. That resilience borne out as Cardiff fought from behind for the 2nd time this season for their point with mild controversy as officials missed an obvious foul on Steve McPhail as the home side netted their opener and then failed to award City penalty of the game after Ross McCormack levelled matters.

A gorgeous summer day with temperatures hitting the 70's in mid-September pulled in a 29,000+ crowd with 2,000 or so travelling Bluebirds. I didn't make the game but the radio commentary was accompanied by non-stop passionate support from the Cardiff fans as they always provide on the road.

City were, unsurprisingly, unchanged from the side that grabbed 3 points at Barnsley in midweek as they went with Heaton, McNaughton-Purse-Johnson-Comminges, Whittingham-Rae-McPhail-Ledley, Parry-Bothroyd. Subs were Enckleman, McCormack, Gypes, Johnson and Aaron Morris.

Derby are a club trying to arrest a freefall. The worst ever side in the Premiership, they were relegated last season with just 1 win and 11 points. Life has been little better for scruffbag Paul Jewell's side at this level either but, last weekend, they picked up their first league win for a year and followed it with a draw at Swansea City in midweek. Their side was Carroll, Connolly-Albrechtsen-Leacock-Stewart, Barazite- Addison-Green-Pearson, Villa-Hulse

The home side opened strongly but it turned out to be another City game where neither keeper had a fantastic amount of work to do. However as Cardiff weathered the early storm and started imposing themselves by going close with a couple of efforts, they fell behind in controversial style against the run of play. Stephen McPhail was fouled on the edge of the box, the Derby player holding his hand up for his challenge but the ball went into the box and ALBRECHTSEN fired home at the far post from an acute angle. Television evidence is compelling.

Cardiff were quite poor from the goal on the half hour mark until Dave Jones finally made a change with Jay Bothroyd entering the scene just before the hour for Whittingham having another anonymous show and Paul Parry pushed wide from attack. It did the trick as City poured forward but, yet again, failed to create openings and be clinical when they had any sort of chance. Dave Jones' failure to reinvest a reasonable proportion of the £13M netted in player sales and that F.A. Cup run in 2008 is already affecting City and I fear it will continue to.

At the three quarters stage, City levelled it, a smart move sent Joe Ledley away and he was felled from behind. ROSS McCORMACK, for the third time this season, sent the keeper the wrong way in netting his 5th goal for City.

There was only one possible winner at this stage but City couldn't produce the goods although Bothroyd tried but the telling moment came as Eddie Johnson, on as a late sub for McCormack, had a golden opportunity but never looked confident and was denied what Dave Jones claims was another clear penalty.

A reasonable point but it's another big week ahead with that Carling Cup clash at Swansea on Tuesday and a massive home game to 2nd place Birmingham City next weekend.

Friday, September 19, 2008


Click the link below to download or listen to tonight's show previewing Saturday's test away at Derby County and ex-player Steve Gammon reminiscing about the old days.



As one transfer window closes, the media now have to speculate on what may happen in January when the next opens and a couple are reporting that West Brom remain determined to land Roger Johnson.

They were turned down with a £4M bid in August but there is speculation they will return with a £5M bid in January for storming and vastly improved centre-half Roger Johnson. Stoke City have also pledged to spend big in January and it would be no surprise if they return for Joe Ledley at that time having been denied with a £6M offer last month when he was top of their shopping list.

At the same time, via the Echo, Cardiff City are pledging to spend money and buy players in January - something they have failed to do any time recently. However when it comes to spending and signings, we have learned the hard way that talk is cheap at Ninian Park.

I guess that much will depend of City's league positon in 4 months, what's in the player's contracts inlcuding release clauses and what may have been siad privately between the club, Johnson and Ledley when City stopped them going last month. Of course, it's also possible no bids at all may be made.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Ahead of their November Las Vegas showdown, Joe Calaghe and Roy Jones Junior will meet face to face to promote the bout this Saturday in Cardiff.

Everyone who attends will get a free big fight t-shirt and is entered in raffles for free signed gloves by the pair.



Discussing all matters Bluebirds, especially last night's victory at Barnsley.

Listen or download via this link below:


Cardiff City have Alan Flitcroft appointed as C.O.O. (Chief Operating Officer) on the boards of Cardiff City FC and Cardiff City Holdings. Apparently, he's a big reputation on television sports rights.

Not much on him having a quick Google

Found this profile

He wrote an Introduction to Understanding Accounts (that'll come in handy with Ridsdale!)http://www.skillset.org/film/knowledge/article_5081_1.asp

BARNSLEY 0 CARDIFF CITY 1 - how the media saw it


Barnsley 0 Cardiff 1Sportinglife.com


Ashes To Ashes
Dust To Dust
We've Got A New Ground
We'll Miss Ninian's Rust

It has been announced that Cardiff City supporters can have their ashes buried in a memorial garden at the new stadium which opens next road across the road from Ninian Park.

It has become a feature at many new football grounds built these days and caters for the demand of, pun intended, diehard fans. The ashes of upto 15 fans are buried under the turf at Ninian Park every season at present and it is expected to escalate with a "dead"-icated garden that relatives can visit.

Only problem I forsee, with a shared ground, what's the odds you'll be buried next to a bloody egg chaser also using it???

BBC STORY > http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/south_east/7619133.stm

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I've never seen them in the same room -could it be The Joker in Batman and Peter Whittingham seen celebrating his winner at Barnsley are one and the same?

The evidence is here!



CARDIFF CITY repeated their 1-0 F.A. Cup Wembley semi-final win over Barnsley. This time, at Oakwell in the Championship, the decider once again coming early too - this time, through Peter Whittingham inside the quarter-hour as The Bluebirds maintained their unbeaten start to the season and propelled themselves into 6th spot sharing 10 points from 6 games with Reading and QPR in 4th and 5th.

Victory was convincing and there will be some relief that City scored but they should have put Barnsley out of sight by half-time instead of fighting to hold onto what they had for much of the second half although, for all the home side's belated huff and puff, they never made City's Tom Heaton produce a single save.

City's third away of the season, all in the South Yorks triangle (following Doncaster and Sheffield United) saw one change was made from the side that drew with Bristol City at the weekend (they lost and are now below us - sweet!) as Ross McCormack started up front with Paul Parry consigning Jay Bothroyd to the bench so it was Heaton, McNaughton-Purse-Johnson-Comminges, Whittingham-Rae-McPhail-Ledley, McCormack-Bothroyd. Subs were Enckleman, Bothroyd, Gypes, Johnson and Aaron Morris.

While City's league form before this game was 1 win and 4 draws, Barnsley had 1 win and 4 defeats, only goal difference separated them and Southampton who are bottom of the Championship ... but who now have a game in hand. Hearing them booed off at half-time and full-time shows a dissatisfied support. They aren't happy with their sides tactics and players used out of position and there was evidence of that tonight - Hume playing wide midfield I ask you?? Their side were Steele, Foster-Moore-Guedes-Kozluk, Campbell-Ryce-Colace-Howard-Hume, Odejayi-Macken.

City were at Barnsley from the off and made it a completely one sided opening period but they yet again failed to show clinical finishing or a killer instinct as they had only a single goal lead when it should easily have been 2 or 3 and game over early.

Whittingham was a whisker wide early, Howard had a similar outcome for the hosts but then PETER WHITTINGHAM powered home from 12 yards after a good move and Darren Moore attempted clearence set him up. How City never made the most of chances for Parry and McCormack (a couple each), Purse, Johnson (twice), Ledley, nobody can explain. Steele did make a couple of fine saves while Johnson was unlucky hitting the angle of post and bar.

It was a miracle how those of us listening to Radio Wales could follow events at all with one of the worst commentaries it has been my misfortune to hear. Graeme Lloyd is not my favourite commentator but even by his standards, this was sub-standard and came across as unprofessional.

A succession of player names were wrongly pronounced. Comminges was called Comming, he told us number 12 hit the bar for City, Whittingham was been called Whittington a couple fo times (Dick!), Barnsley's Darren Moore was called Derren all night.

We had 10 seconds of commentary that went something like "ooh ahh uhh, oh .... he was offside, was he?". We had a few ooh and aah moments as the commentator was unable to describe the action to listeners.

Another time when City won an edge of area free-kick, Lloyd said "so that was a free-kick for a foul, was it? Got to admit, I was looking at the football scores in front of me". All night, he announced only Champions Leagues scores, not once did he cover the Championship where our interest lied apart from a couple of mentions of Swansea and finished the half with, "that was a very good half-time whistle for Cardiff City".

Thankfully, he got better in the 2nd half - by better, I mean just about bearable although his pager was constantly going off - but City didn't.

Barnsley, to nobody's surprise, decided to make more of a fight of it and get City working for their victory. It was a half of few chances but Barnsley saw more of the ball and applied some pressure but didn't seem to have any idea what to do or how to score as City's defence protected Heaton for the entire match.

More points are on offer this weekend as City visit Derby in 21st place although they beat Sheffield United on the weekend and Swansea had to fight back to get a home draw with them tonight. However that's all ahead, for now, this was a good victory and heartening to see.

Unintentional Funny

Had an e-mail off a company I've used before for a holiday saying how you'd be covered by them and how they sorted out XL passengers etc.

Then I realised the owners name is probably pronounced as Aching Cock - which is often after a holiday!

XL Airways Collapse

Dear Nigel ,
With the recent media coverage of the collapse of XL airlines, it would not be surprising if some of you were worrying about your holidays or wondering how on earth you would be able to feel confident about booking a holiday in the future. I thought this would be a good opportunity, therefore, for me to reassure you and also to explain a little bit about the safeguards that are in place. Anatolian Sky has been in the market for nearly 20 years.

It is a very well-established tour operator and a member of both ABTA (Association of British Travel Agents) and AITO (Association of Independent Tour Operators). Most importantly, though, we are bonded by the Civil Aviation Authority under ATOL licence number 2672. What this means is that in the extremely unlikely event that anything should happen to us then your holiday would be covered by this bond.

More importantly, for those of you who were booked through us on XL flights, it means that it is our responsibility to re-arrange your flights for you, at no extra cost to you. As I am sure you know, XL went into liquidation last Friday and as soon as we heard the news we worked around the clock to ensure that there was as little disruption to our clients' holidays as possible.

By Saturday morning we had already made alternative arrangements for those clients who were due to come back from Dalaman on an XL flight that evening and for those who were due to depart on their holidays. This was all at no extra cost to our clients. Those people whose flights were not booked through an ATOL tour operator like ourselves would have had to pay again for their flights - that is if they could have found a seat. Flight prices to Turkey almost doubled as soon as the collapse of XL was announced so this could have proved to be a very expensive business. ATOL bonding is just one of the many reasons to book with a reputable operator such as Anatolian Sky. As a specialist, our close personal relationships with hotels and airlines help us to cope better with difficult situations such as these.

If you did book through another tour operator and have been affected by the situation with XL then we do still have some availability in Turkey and North Cyprus for the rest of the summer season.

For further details please call 0845 365 1011 or visit www.anatoliansky.co.uk

Yours sincerely,

Akin Koc
Managing Director


It has been confirmed that Jimmy Floyd-Hasselbaink has quit football, his final appearence taking place at Wembley in Cardiff City's F.A. Cup Final defeat at Wembley ... a high to go out on but a personal display that suggested his time was up.



He did recently trial with Norwich City, or train with them as he described it, but no contract offer was forthcoming. Good Luck to Jimmy.

It closes one of many inglorious chapters that took place over summer at Cardiff City. As became known, Peter Ridsdale get himself suckered into a position where Hasselbaink was able to claim entitlement to a contract for this season reportedly worth nearly £800,000 even though City had no intention of keeping him.

The PFA became involved and the matter threatened to boil over into the courts but that has, thankfully, been averted with Peter Ridsdale declaring that "the football club are entirely satisfied with the outcome". He would say that, wouldn't he?

However no way should anyone be satisfied that the club got itself placed in this situation and, although we'll never know what has been paid to Jimmy, it's a fair bet it wasn't cheap and that it may well have impacted on the playing bdget and possibly spending for this season.

And we're supposed to be "entirely satisfied" at that?


Hasselbaink calls it quits after City deal WalesOnline


Monday, September 15, 2008


You can listen to the latest show or download via this link.
It features an interview with ex Cricket umpire & Barnsley fan Dickie Bird ahead of City's game at Oakwell tomorrow.
The show had been under threat with no sponsor but has now been saved thanks to a Cardiff firm run by a City fan called Call4Staff. Thanks.

Sunday, September 14, 2008


This morning's News of the World alleges an explosive bust up took place on Friday at Cardiff City's training ground in front of the players between Dave Jones and John Toshack which resulted in the Wales manager being thrown off the site with some industrial Dave Jones abuse. More like a Clash of the Egos.

The paper also alleges Paul Parry's problem with Toshack and Wales last week started when he skipped training on Wednesday to attend a baby scan.

However the showdown between club and national boss came when Toshack seethed at Dave Jones' reported comments in the newspaper - which this blog also believes went too far and unecessary - and called on him to discuss them. The meeting apparently lasted less than 60 seconds.

Just when you think the Parry affair will die down, there's another twist. More will inevitably follow.