REPORT | THE BLUEBIRDS MATCH LEAGUE LEADERS BURNLEY
Match Reports5th April
Cardiff City earned a deserved point against Sky Bet Championship leaders Burnley at Turf Moor, following a high paced goalless draw.
Russell Slade made two changes to the side that defeated Derby County on Saturday, with Peter Whittingham and Craig Noone rested from the start as Kagisho Dikgacoi and Tom Lawrence came into the opening eleven.
It was Lawrence who had the first chance of the match, his deflected shot after just two minutes drifting inches wide of goal.
The Bluebirds had further opportunities in the opening period, Stuart O'Keefe and Anthony Pilkington denied by former Cardiff City goalkeeper Tom Heaton, who was in fine form.
The league leaders from Lancashire were positive in their build-up play, trying to control possession and break open City's back line. Sean Morrison made arguably the best tackle of the match with 24 minutes on the clock. Former Hull City man George Boyd bearing down on goal, with seemingly only David Marshall to beat, before Morrison's superb recovery slide tackle to stop Boyd's shot before it could leave his foot.
Chances continued to flow towards the end of the first period, and into the second half, with former teammates Marshall and Heaton standing out in opposing goals. The determined central defensive partnership of Bruno Ecuele Manga and Sean Morrison also shining for Slade's men, against the in-form strike force of Sam Vokes and Andre Gray.
The lively Vokes failed to find the target after 72 minutes under pressure from Morrison, and was again off target after 80 minutes as the Cardiff defence continued to stand strong.
Into the final ten minutes, it was the away side who looked more likely to take home the three points. Lex Immers' shot deflected wide just seconds before substitute Kenneth Zohore was played clear. Zohore doing almost everything right, making space before placing his lobbed effort over the reach of Heaton, but unfortunate as the ball bounced out off the crossbar.
From one winning moment, to a game saving heroic effort at the other end. David Marshall with two world class saves deep into the five minutes added on to firstly deny Vokes' header before using his legs to push clear Ashley Barnes' flick at the near post.
It was an exciting game that both teams could have won, with the Bluebirds more than matching the league leaders at their own ground. Slade's men will quickly turn their attention towards Saturday's next huge clash, this Saturday, against Fulham.
FINAL SCORE: BURNLEY 0-0 CARDIFF CITY
Burnley: Heaton, Lowton, Mee, Keane, Ward, Boyd, Barton, Jones, Arfield (Taylor, 66), Vokes, Gray (Barnes, 76). Subs Not Used: Robinson, Kightly, Marney, Darikwa, Tarkowski.
Cardiff City: Marshall, Peltier, Morrison, Manga, Malone, O'Keefe (Zohore, 82), Dikgacoi, Ralls, Lawrence (Noone, 82), Pilkington (Gunnarsson, 66), Immers. Subs Not Used: Moore, Fabio, Whittingham, Ameobi.