OLE RELISHING FIRST DERBY TIE
Club News7th February
City boss looks for three points and historyReady to taste the passion and atmosphere of the South Wales derby for the very first time, City boss Ole Gunnar Solskjær is looking for his side to claim their own slice of history.
Neither side has ever completed a league double over their local rivals in one season in the 102 years that the derby has been competed, a statistic the Bluebirds could demolish on Saturday if they can repeat November’s victory over the Swans at Cardiff City Stadium.
And well and truly relishing his first Premier League derby as a manager, Ole told our derby day Cardiff City Player special, In the City: “We know that this is a chance to create history. That’s something that is in the back of everyone's minds, I’m sure.
“That’s what everyone dreams about - to play and beat their local rivals. That's especially the case for the local lads in the squad. We’ve had some tough games and we’re looking forward to this one as well.”
Confidence is high amongst a Cardiff City side buoyed by a precious and determined victory over Norwich City last weekend, as Craig Bellamy’s first goal of the season and a Kenwyne Jones debut strike secured a first league win for the new City boss.
Now Ole wants to see his side build on that result, starting at Liberty Stadium on Saturday, saying: “We’re hoping that a result like last weekend can give us the momentum to push on.
“But to get there we need a performance. At times we played well against Norwich, but at other times we didn’t, so we’ve tweaked a few things and we’ll be ready.
“We’ve had some good wins in the FA Cup but it was important for us to get points in the league. The Cup run is nice of course, but the league is very tight – if we can get two or three results on the bounce, it’ll look so much better for us in the table.
“The derby means a lot for our supporters, but this week we’ve prepared like we always do. If you start looking at this game too early you can tire yourself out just thinking about it. You’ve just got to focus on your job. The players need to go home Friday night, relax, but on Saturday as the game gets closer, they must focus on what's ahead.”
There was more good news for the Bluebirds ahead of Saturday’s trip west too, as goalkeeper David Marshall put pen-to-paper on a new long-term deal, securing his future at Cardiff City Stadium until at least 2018.
“It was fantastic news for everyone at the club and for David,” said the Manager. “He’s always been adamant that he wanted to stay here because he enjoys it so much – then you just try and get his signature as soon as possible.
“He’s just what I look for in a player – he has a great attitude, every morning he comes into training wanting to learn and improve. It’s a great signal to send out to everyone that we want to keep our best players here at Cardiff City.”
WATCH AN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH OLE AND MORE IN OUR DERBY DAY PREVIEW SHOW, IN THE CITY BELOW