THE FIGHT FOR SURVIVAL
Cardiff City’s survival rivals in the Premier League include Norwich City (eighteenth on thirty two points with two games left), Fulham (nineteenth on thirty one points with two games to play), Sunderland (seventeenth on thirty two points with three matches remaining) and Aston Villa (sixteenth on thirty five points with three matches left).
City are in twentieth place with thirty points and two games remaining, while West Brom, West Ham United and Hull City are still not mathematically assured of safety just yet.
The possible scenarios are as follows. Two wins from our final two games (at Newcastle and at home to Chelsea) would give us thirty six points, four more than the points currently held by Sunderland and Norwich. But what of the prospects of our rivals?
Fulham are at Stoke City this Saturday and then at home to Crystal Palace, both of Fulham’s opponents in mid-table. Fulham will draw confidence from the fact that they beat Stoke 1-0 at home in early-October followed by a 4-1 win at Crystal Palace. The Cottages have also secured two wins and a draw in their last four games.
As for Norwich City who have lost their last five matches, they face a formidable task, starting with an away trip o second placed Chelsea on Saturday before hosting Arsenal on the final day. Norwich were well beaten by both opponents in mid-October.
Sunderland have a good spell recently. After five consecutive defeats they then drew 2-2 at Manchester City, won 2-1 at Chelsea and beat us 4-0 last Sunday. This Saturday they are at Manchester United to whom they lost last October. The Black Cats game in hand is next Wednesday at home to West Brom before they finish with a home game against mid-table Swansea City.
Aston Villa are only three points above the relegation zone, having taken just one point from their last five games. They are at home to Hull City this Saturday before their game in hand next Wednesday at title hopefuls Manchester City. Villa finish with a visit to Tottenham on May 11.
West Bromwich Albion, with one defeat in their last five games, go to Arsenal this Saturday - the Gunners just one win away from a Champions League place for next season. Albion then have that vital game at Sunderland next Wednesday, finishing with a home game against Stoke.
West Ham Utd need one win from their final two matches be completely sure of safety, but they may not even need that depending on other results. The Hammers are at home to Spurs this Saturday, having won 3-0 at White Hart Lane last October. They then finish the 2013/14 season with a visit to Manchester City.
With just six points separating the bottom six going into this Saturday’s matches it will be an interesting and tense weekend for many. For the travelling Cardiff City fans and all associated with the club, here’s to a positive result to keep the Bluebirds firmly in the mix.