MATCH PREVIEW: CARDIFF CITY vs BRIGHTON & HOVE ALBION
Venue: Cardiff City Stadium
Date: Saturday, 20th February 2016, 12:30 K.O.
Cardiff City Stadium welcomes the Sky Sports cameras tomorrow, as the Bluebirds face a rejuvenated Brighton side at 12:30pm.
After an explosive start to the 2015/16 campaign, which saw them go undefeated for twenty-one league games, the Seagulls suffered a blip throughout the festive period. After a 3-0 home defeat to promotion rivals Middlesbrough, Albion managed just one point from the 19th of December until the 16th of January. However, since then, our visitors have won all but one of their matches – a 0-0 draw with league leaders Hull City on Tuesday.
In an attempt to boost their promotion credentials, the Seagulls made three January signings. Anthony Knockaert, a former Championship winner with Leicester City, joined the Club from Standard Liège. That signing was followed up by the loan acquisition of experienced midfielder Steve Sidwell, who rejoined the cub on loan, having enjoyed a short spell in Brighton back in 2002/03. Meanwhile on Deadline Day, Chris Hughton brought in Czech midfielder Jiří Skalák from Mladá Boleslav.
On the pitch, striker Tomer Hemed leads the club goalscoring charts, with the Israeli forward netting eight times so far. Bobby Zamora, who returned to the south coast last summer, has scored seven. Keeper David Stockdale has also been in fine form this season, with ten clean sheets to his name.
Russell Slade was in charge of the Seagulls back in 2009 and, having been appointed in March, the City boss saved Brighton from League One relegation, and stayed at the club until November that year.
Our current manager isn’t the only Russell to have been involved at both clubs! Ex-England defender Russell Osman played for and managed the Bluebirds in 1996, having made 17 appearances for Albion the previous year. Osman, who featured in the famous film ‘Escape to Victory’, stayed in the Cardiff hot-seat until February 1998.
Charlie Oatway made 32 appearances for the Bluebirds in the 1994/95 season, before going on to join Brighton in 1999. He played over 200 games for the club in an eight year spell – and went on to become First Team Coach between 2009 and 2012.
A more current connection was the purchase of winger Craig Noone from Albion in August 2012. The tricky wide man made his Cardiff debut against Wolverhampton Wanderers three days after signing, and played a starring role in our 3-1 victory.
Brighton & Hove Albion 3 – 5 Cardiff City
Goldstone Ground, 12th April 1994
City brought home a well-earned three points from this Second Division clash, with Paul Millar scoring a hat-trick.
The Bluebirds fell behind after 11 minutes, with Paul McCarthy’s looping header giving the Seagulls an advantage. It wasn’t long before Cardiff were back on level terms; with Millar’s first penalty of the day levelling the score.
City’s number six Millar scored a spectacular second to put the Bluebirds in front; a dipping effort from 35 yards out which could not be stopped. Cardiff legend Phil Stant then slotted home to make the score 3-1 at half-time.
Cohen Griffith’s inch-perfect pass set up Wayne Fereday for a fourth, as the Bluebirds raced into a convincing lead. Midfielder Griffith won a penalty soon afterwards, which Millar duly converted to secure himself the match ball.
Future Cardiff striker Kurt Nogan won and then scored a penalty which reduced the deficit, and hopes of a late fight-back were increased with the sending off of Cardiff defender Damon Searle. However, despite a second goal from Nogan, the Bluebirds held out for a win from this dramatic contest.
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