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30 March 2018 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. Burton Albion

The Bluebirds are back at CCS after the International break…

29 March 2018

Cardiff City host Nigel Clough’s Burton Albion on Good Friday, as the Bluebirds look to build on their seven-game winning run in the Sky Bet Championship.

Burton make the trip to the Welsh capital following a 3-1 defeat to league leaders Wolverhampton Wanderers a fortnight ago, extending their winless run to five games.

What to expect from the Brewers…

Currently occupying 23rd spot in the league table, Clough’s side have the lowest goal difference in the division despite being two points above bottom club Sunderland.

Having only won seven of a possible 38 encounters this season the Staffordshire side see themselves fighting for their Championship status along with Birmingham City, Barnsley, Reading and Bolton.

Former Leicester City winger Lloyd Dyer is currently at the summit of the Burton goal scoring ranks, netting on seven occasions thus far. Much like his fellow goal-threat Lucas Akins, Dyer’s pace and natural width saw him deployed as a makeshift wing-back at times earlier in the campaign, yet since being advanced into a wide-forward position within a 3-4-3 shape, his influence has come to the fore. 

As mentioned, Akins has also been another standout in the Brewers’ camp. A powerful and pacey presence in their attacking line, he has contributed four goals and six assists to the relegation fight this season, meaning he’s been directly involved in 30% of all of Burton’s Championship goals.

In the hot seat…

Nigel Clough returned to Burton in 2015 to guide the club to the Championship, having previously managed the Brewers throughout the early 2000s.

A prolific striker with over 130 career goals, Clough began his career at Nottingham Forest under the guidance of his father, Brian. He won the League Cup in 1989 and 1990 with Forest and left the club in 1996 as their second-highest all-time scorer. He spent time in the Premier League with Liverpool and Manchester City, winning 14 England caps before moving to non-League Burton in 1998 as player-manager.

Clough helped Albion reach the Football League in 2008-09, after two prior promotions from lower leagues; however, he left the club before the Conference title was secured, following in his father’s footsteps by joining Derby County. Clough achieved a series of top-half finishes at Pride Park but left the club during the 2013-14 season. A two-season stint at Sheffield United followed, before he returned to Burton to seal promotion to the second tier as League One Runners-Up two seasons ago.

Previous meetings…

There have only ever been five meetings between ourselves and Friday’s opponents, with the reverse fixture on the opening day seeing the Bluebirds triumph with a 1-0 win thanks to a brilliant solo effort from Kenneth Zohore.

The first ever meeting between the two sides came just eight years ago, as Burton were again the visitors to Cardiff City Stadium in the 1st Round of the recently re-named Carabao Cup.

It took an extra time brace from Ross McCormack and a Michael Chopra strike to see us progress into the next round during the 2010/11 campaign.

Club Connections…

There are three ex-Bluebirds in the Burton ranks this season, with former ‘keeper Stephen Bywater and defenders John Brayford and Ben Turner all plying their trade for the Midlands side.

Bluebirds stopper Lee Camp - currently on loan at Sunderland - completed a loan spell at the Staffordshire club back in 2003. Former City favourite Joe Mason was also loaned from Wolves and made four appearances, scoring with his first touch for Nigel Clough's men.

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Match Reports

Match Report: Cardiff City 3-1 Burton Albion

30 March 2018

Cardiff City secured an eighth consecutive victory with a battling triumph over Burton Albion at Cardiff City Stadium.

The Bluebirds made one change to the side that defeated Brentford 3-1 last time out, as Craig Bryson replaced Loïc Damour in the starting eleven. Aron Gunnarsson was also named on the bench for Neil Warnock’s side, returning from injury for his first inclusion since November 2017.

It was the visitors who had the first opportunity to go ahead inside the first two minutes. Jamie Allen’s free-kick from 35 yards was headed towards goal by Liam Boyce, but he was denied by an alert Sean Morrison on the line.

However, the hosts fought back to break the deadlock with 16 minutes played. Joe Bennett played a fantastic ball over the top to Junior Hoilett on the left flank. The winger then squared the ball to Kenneth Zohore to divert home with a clever finish - his fourth goal in his last six league outings.

Five minutes later, the Brewers were back on level terms. Lloyd Dyer found space on the left before steering a low pass to Darren Bent who converted from close range.

Undeterred by the equaliser, Cardiff City came close to restoring their lead with 26 minutes gone. Bennett delivered a high swerving cross into the box from a free-kick, but Morrison saw his powerful header caught by Stephen Bywater.

Warnock’s men continued to push for another goal and had a glorious opportunity to make it 2-1 after 32 minutes. Mendez-Laing showed a superb turn of pace to round the stranded Bywater on the far right. The number 19 looked up, before finding Craig Bryson, who hit narrowly wide with his first-time effort.

As the game approached first time stoppage time, the Bluebirds were finally rewarded for their persistent pressure on the Burton Albion back line. Morrison played a high ball over the top to Zohore, who held off his opponent to flick on to Mendez-Laing on the right. The 25 year old burst into the area before smashing the ball high into the near corner.

With less than a minute played in the second half, it was almost 3-1. Zohore was unleashed through the middle and unselfishly looked to find Mendez-Laing for a tap-in when one-on-one. Unfortunately a vital touch from the Brewers defence saw the ball taken from the winger's path, when he looked destined to score.

On the hour mark, the home side continued to pile on the pressure. Morrison thought he had put his side further ahead but his headed goal from a corner was ruled out by referee Simon Hooper for an alleged foul on the goalkeeper.

City kept their heads up though and did find their third three minutes later. Callum Paterson was on hand to lash home, after Hoilett had found Bryson in the box. Paterson has now scored in four consecutive games, taking his tally to nine for the season.

The Bluebirds were now dominant and almost extended their lead again with 78 minutes gone. Hoilett, from the edge of the area, played an exquisite pass to Marko Grujić, who was one-on-one with the ‘keeper. However, the Serbian international saw his left footed attempt saved by the former Cardiff City shot-stopper.

Gary Madine then almost scored his first goal for the Club in the first minute of stoppage time - the forward seeing his header saved at close range by Bywater.

As the full-time whistle was blown, a win was confirmed for the hosts, who are now unbeaten in 12 consecutive league games.

Final Score: Cardiff City 3-1 Burton Albion

Cardiff City: Etheridge, Ecuele Manga, Morrison, Bamba, Bennett, Bryson (Gunnarson 66’), Grujić, Paterson, Hoilett, Mendez-Laing (Wildschut 85’), Zohore (Madine 70’).

Subs not used: Murphy, Peltier, Pilkington, J. Ward.

Burton Albion: Bywater, Brayford (Egert 75’), Allen, McFadzean, Murphy, Bent (Sbarra 81’), Dyer, Flanagan, Naylor, Sordell, Boyce (Davenport 69’).

Subs not used: Campbell, Buxton, Turner, Samuelsen.

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