Match Report | Cardiff City 1-0 Blackburn Rovers
Cardiff City earned a deserved victory over Blackburn Rovers at Cardiff City Stadium on Tuesday evening.
In a positive attacking performance, Mark Harris’ second-half strike was enough for the Bluebirds to secure all three points, as City goalkeeper Ryan Allsop brilliantly denied George Hirst from the penalty-spot in added-time.
Interim boss Mark Hudson made two changes to the side that drew to Burnley last time out, with Romaine Sawyers and Andy Rinomhota coming into the starting XI.
As City started brightly, the Bluebirds forced a great chance to take the lead, as some brilliant work from Sheyi Ojo to win the ball back high up the pitch led to Callum Robinson finding space to shoot, with his dangerous effort blocked out for a corner, which Callum O’Dowda headed narrowly wide.
Buoyed by his first City goal in the draw with Burnley last time out, Robinson posed a real danger, striking just wide from the left side of the area, before forcing Thomas Kaminski into a save in another positive Bluebirds attack. Hudson’s side continued to create opportunities, as Cedric Kipré won the ball back in the centre circle and played in Robinson, who couldn’t quite direct an effort goalwards.
Before the break, Ojo found Robinson in space on the right side of the box, whose effort from an acute angle was saved by Kaminski, with Rovers captain Lewis Travis just beating O’Dowda to the follow-up to clear. Following some fantastic work from Kipré to win the ball back and drive forward, the Bluebirds had a free-kick in a dangerous position, which Perry Ng struck into the arms of Kaminski.
Another set-piece chance fell to City following a foul on the edge of the area on Rinomhota, with Robinson firing a great effort just wide of the post. Despite an entertaining first-half, the contest was goalless at the interval.
The visitors had an opportunity to open the scoring early in the second period, as a dangerous run from Tyrhys Dolan saw him find Sammie Szmodics free in the box, whose effort was saved by Ryan Allsop. Hudson looked for reinforcements from his bench on the hour mark, with Joe Ralls and Harris introduced. The latter had a chance to make an instant impact as he was played into space on the left, but his cross into the area couldn’t quite find a fellow Bluebird.
In another positive City attack, Robinson looked to be clear through on goal following a great ball by Ng, only for Daniel Ayala to produce a fine last-ditch tackle. As the Bluebirds pushed to break the deadlock, the ball was played to Ralls on the edge of the box, whose curling effort was saved by Kaminski. Jaden Philogene went close shortly after coming on, as he drove forward with a direct run and struck wide.
City were rewarded for their persistence in attack, taking the lead in the 83rd minute through substitute Harris, who struck a brilliant effort into the top corner with a clinical finish. In added-time, Dominic Hyam beat Allsop to the ball to earn a penalty for Rovers, but the City goalkeeper produced a brilliant save to deny Hirst to maintain his clean sheet and earn Hudson’s side all three points.
The Bluebirds return to action this weekend with a trip to Wigan Athletic’s DW Stadium on Saturday 8 October, 3pm KO.
FINAL SCORE: CARDIFF CITY 1–0 BLACKBURN ROVERS
Cardiff City: Allsop, Romeo (Simpson 23’), Ng, Kipré, Nkounkou, Wintle, Sawyers (Ralls 62’), Rinomhota, Ojo (Harris 62’), O’Dowda (Philogene 76’), Robinson. Subs not used: Alnwick, Nelson, Whyte.
Blackburn Rovers: Kaminski, Brittain, Pickering, Ayala, Hyam, Szmodics (Dack 68’), Dolan (Hirst 57’), Hedges, Buckley (Morton 57’), Brereton Díaz (Gallagher 68’), Travers ©. Subs not used: Pears, Wharton, Carter.