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26 December 2017 Venue Cardiff City Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - Championship

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Match Previews

Match Preview: Cardiff City vs. Fulham

The Bluebirds return to CCS on Boxing Day…

24 December 2017

Cardiff City host 11th place Fulham on Boxing Day, in the first of two successive festive home fixtures.

Fulham travel to South Wales off the back of a 2-1 win over Barnsley at Craven Cottage on Saturday, securing their third successive home victory.

What to expect from the Cottagers…

Slaviša Jokanović’s side have faltered away from home of late, not picking up any points in their last two fixtures away from Craven Cottage.

However, despite occupying 11th place in the table, Fulham are just five points off the play-off places – demonstrating the competition in the Sky Bet Championship table this term.

Winger Sheyi Ojo has become of the Cottager’s main men, and the Liverpool loanee scored the winning goal in that win over Barnsley to take his tally to three since he joined in the summer. The 20 year-old will be keen to impress his parent club, having been loaned out on three consecutive occasions.

Norwegian Stefan Johansen is the surprise name at the summit of the Fulham goal-scoring ranks, leading the way with four goals. The central midfielder has been one of Fulham’s most consistent players since his move from Celtic, making 57 appearances in just over a year.

17-year-old Ryan Sessegnon will be another to watch, having scored three career goals against the Bluebirds. In November, the teenager notched his first professional hat-trick on his 50th appearance for the Cottagers.

In the hot seat…

Jokanović has enjoyed a diverse managerial career since he retired from playing in 2004. He began his journey in his native Serbia with Fudbalski klub Partizan, before spells in Thailand and Spain, which led him to North London with Watford.

The 49 year-old guided the Hornets to the top flight of English football, before moving to Israel and Maccabi Tel Aviv. Six months later he returned to England and will celebrate two years in West London on 27th December.

Previous meetings…

The two sides met back in August, as Danny Ward netted a late equaliser for the Bluebirds in a 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage – making it four draws in the last six meetings.

City’s last victory over Tuesday’s opponents was in January 2015, as skipper Sean Morrison headed home the winner at Cardiff City Stadium.

Club connections…

Current City players Jazz Richards and Neil Etheridge have both had spells in West London, as Richards returned to South Wales in a swap deal including former Bluebird Scott Malone. Etheridge began his career with the Cottagers, playing in the Europe League against OB Odense.

Others to play for both clubs include Ross McCormack, Eddie Johnson, Kagisho Dikgacoi and Heidar Helguson.

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Match Reports

Match Report: Cardiff City 2-4 Fulham

Fulham strike on the break to thwart a City comeback...

26 December 2017

Cardiff City slipped to defeat on Boxing Day as Fulham ran out 4-2 winners at Cardiff City Stadium.

Neil Warnock made two changes for the fixture. Zohore made his first start following an injury lay-off, while Craig Bryson also returned to the starting eleven.

The away side took the lead after 12 minutes. A corner from the left-hand side caused problems in the City defence, and Floyd Ayite’s dinked cross was flicked on by Stefan Johansen and into the path of Tim Ream, who headed into an empty net from five yards.

The Bluebirds reacted positively after going behind and carved out some chances of their own. Successive corners eventually saw the ball drop to Joe Ralls on the edge of the box, but his curling effort was held by Bettinelli.

Just after the half-hour mark City had another chance to get back into the game. Nathaniel Mendez-Laing was fouled on the edge of the Fulham area, with Floyd Ayité booked as a result, but the free-kick came to nothing.

Five minutes before half-time Zohore almost headed the Bluebirds level. Following good work down the right from Peltier and Mendez-Laing, the latter’s cross was met by Zohore, with Bettinelli managing to tip his goal-bound effort around the post.

The Bluebirds again came close 10 minutes after the interval. A lovely weighted through ball from Bryson to Zohore saw the Dane fire at goal from a narrow angle. But it was the visitors that doubled their lead a few minutes later - Floyd Ayite tapping in a low cross from the left-hand side.

However, Zohore got the Bluebirds back into the game with a wonder strike just a minute later. Good hold up play from Junior Hoilett saw the Canadian play a bouncing ball to Zohore, who struck a magnificent effort into the top corner on the half-volley.

City had their tails up and were almost level on 66 minutes. First, Ralls’ free-kick was almost headed in by a Fulham defender, before Sol Bamba’s effort from the resulting corner was again saved by Bettinelli.

However, it was the away side that got the decisive goal, through Ryan Sessegnon. The 17 year-old nipped in ahead of Ralls and placed his effort past the onrushing Etheridge to make it 3-1.

City battled until the final whistle, with Callum Paterson nodding home a late consolation from a Lee Peltier cross, but the Bluebirds couldn’t contain the Cottagers and Stefan Johansen netted a fourth in stoppage time to see Fulham return to West London with the three points.

Cardiff City: Etheridge, Peltier, Bamba, Ecuele Manga, Bennett, Ralls, Zohore, Mendez-Laing, Damour (Healey, 73’), Bryson, Hoilett (Paterson, 73’).

Subs not used: Murphy, Tomlin, Feeney, Pilkington, Halford.

Fulham: Bettinelli, Fredricks, Sessegnon (Piazon, 90), Odoi, McDonald, Johansen, Cairney, Ayite (Fonte, 77’), Ream, Ojo (Kebano, 86’), Kalas.

Subs not used: Button, Fonte, Norwood, Piazon, Djalo, De Le Torre.

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