Cardiff City recorded back-to-back home victories for the second time this year as Peter Whittingham found the net in the thirty-seventh minute, cancelling out Daryl Murphy’s opener.
Macheda’s second league goal this campaign put Cardiff ahead two minutes into the restart whilst Le Fondre’s effort provided a comfortable cushion to cap off a deserved victory for the hard-working home side, City manager Russell Slade is still yet to taste anything other than victory.
I’m delighted”, Russell explained, sitting in front of the local press post-match. “But for a different reason tonight. I don’t think we started the game quite as well as we had done on Saturday – I’m disappointed with the goal we gave away. I think we turned the ball over three or four times and didn’t close down the space.
“What I was pleased about was the response. It was a great finish from Whittingham to get us level, second half we galvanised ourselves and that’s where the game was won.
“I think the players are finding a bit more within themselves; we’re sticking to the game plan a lot better. Sometimes they need reminders, of course! But we’ve stayed on track tonight and to have two back-to-back wins is really appreciated; It’s a fantastic platform to build upon.”
Peter Whittingham’s goal and performance was amongst his best this season, with Slade finding time to praise the playmaker that has clearly added several defensive strings to his bow in recent years.
“The first was an absolute peach. Of the two other goals, one was a bit fortunate but the fact is we were positive in terms of what we were doing in and around their box.
“When Whittingham scores one he can often get another. If your midfielders are contributing like that it gives a great opportunity for the team to win. He wasn’t called up for international duty. He was part of all the work we had done on the training ground – Peter knuckled down, got on with it and did everything we asked of him. I can only say he is a model professional.”
The new City manager has orchestrated two wins in his first two matches in charge with performances full of desire and purpose.
“I’m a football manager.” Slade stated, highlighting the importance togetherness can bring. “I’ve done 650-plus games and you want the fans with you and pulling in the same direction. It’s the only way to achieve success – if we’re all in it together we will give ourselves a better chance.
"It’s early days but it gives us momentum and belief that we can climb the table. We’ve had to win the fans over again. It’s important; it’s up to myself and up to the team to get the fans going again. I believe we’re achieving that.
“I never expect to lose a game – that’s just the mentality of a manager. You prepare your team to win a match – I would never my team to try and nick a result. I’m playing with two front men, trying to break quickly and try to move the ball forward more quickly than we have previously done so. I try to play an attacking brand of football that gives you an opportunity to score. I hope they’re enjoying that and I hope that the fans enjoy it.”