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Match day thread: Cardiff

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  • Does Mehmeti skilfully manage to keep out of the firing line or have opposition defenders not realised they have to kick him yet?😁 We seemed to have so many attacking threats today Cardiff were taken by surprise...

  • Anyone else think that was Mehmeti’s best game?

  • @username123 said:
    Anyone else think that was Mehmeti’s best game?

    Yep definitely - he’s been a great lift from the bench in precious games, but when he’s started he’s struggled to make the same impact. Today he was brilliant. I hope we can get him on a longer term contract and really see him develop with us.

    No idea how someone like him was in non-league last season.

  • Start the same 11 on Saturday

  • @Forest_Blue said:
    Start the same 11 on Saturday

    Agreed. Tafazolli’s header showed confidence in front of goal, something we’ve lacked. Mehmeti looked like he’d truly arrived and Horgan, as did the team, were eager to play creative and effective football. Then on came the closers, the battlers, the β€œoh shit we have to defend against him now” legend and it was game over.

  • Just looked at the possession stats. 34% for Wycombe. How long before we hear the old comments of "wouldn't want to watch that every week"? Kind of miss those post match remarks along with, "You know what your going to get with Wycombe ". As @glasshalffull has often eulogies, there are more ways to win a game of football. We have ours but are improving with our comfort in possession.

  • Funnily enough, Neil Harris did say "You know what your going to get with Wycombe " tonight, though it did seem like it was intended as a compliment (battling, first to every ball, etc.)

  • I was just thinking, if Stewart was fit again tomorrow and we went with the same system (i.e. only one DM, meaning Knight can't be moved forward), would he necessarily get back in the team? I think we have three absolutely top drawer CBs - and Tafazolli restores the symmetry and boosts distribution. Obviously that becomes irrelevant if we play with two DMs, but it's a crazy situation to be in!

  • Dang, that's an annoying match to have missed. Great to hear that we played with balance, utilised all 11 players in positions they're natural in (Wheeler is obviously a natural in at least 10 of the 11), mixed it up with the ball on the ground as well as in the air, and utilised a mobile target man (with Bayo coming on to give them hell for the last ten minutes). Everything I've been hoping for.

    I'm never one to blow my own trumpet but I do believe I've been saying for a while now that Tafazolli could prove the key signing. And that Wheeler is the lynchpin of the team. And that, yes, it's just possible we could play better with Bayo not in the side.

    Now we just need to sign another strong, mobile target man for when Uche inevitably gets injured again, another creative midfielder to swap in with Mehmeti (I will accept I may have been wrong on him, though he looks too frail for regular matches to me) and keep Knight or bring in an equivalent. Tonight's victory shows the importance of spending money this window. We're good enough to stay up at full strength but not when injuries kick in. A few key additions now could pay off handsomely if they keep us up.

  • Food for thought - since that opening seven game losing streak we have 15 points from 15 games, which is almost exactly the pace to stay up. That's with all the things which have gone against us. If enough things can go our way to make up for thosr seven losses, we can stay up. Still "7 over par" (15 from 22) but an opportunity to take the number down to 5 against Boro.

  • @jessvl1 said:

    @username123 said:
    Anyone else think that was Mehmeti’s best game?

    Yep definitely - he’s been a great lift from the bench in precious games, but when he’s started he’s struggled to make the same impact. Today he was brilliant. I hope we can get him on a longer term contract and really see him develop with us.

    No idea how someone like him was in non-league last season.

    And not even playing at the conference level for a team like Maidenhead or Slough, but in the Essex Senior League which is Step 5, the equivalent level to Holmer Green or Flackwell Heath!

  • That was as complete a performance you will see in the championship this season. Perfect tactically and that's why Uche didnt play against Bristol at the weekend.

    Amazing what 2 x fresh players in Uche and Taf can provide during a heavy fixture list. That said the whole team were superb. Still cant believe we picked McCleary up on a free, the cross from open play for Wheelers header was premier league quality. Also he works so hard out of possession, tucked in deep all night and sprinting into defence positions.

    Tafazolli was superb as the senior defender with Knight, not just the goal but all round play. Good defenders look like they have time under pressure, he was outstanding.

    Cardiff are a proper team in this league, we nullified all threat including 2 premier league players in Wilson and Ojo. My slight criticism of Cardiff is that they seemed to eager to rely on those 2 players which made it easier for us, watching Cardiff over the last couple of years they are at there best battling and playing for each other. Simalir to Wycombe in many ways.

    Good impact subs from Gaz to help close the game out. In the right settings would be good to see Scotty Kashket play off Uche. His instinctive play will benefit from the space Uche will create and we know he will get goals.

    Finally another good performance from Mehmeti. Need to keep grounded as there will invariably be some mixed nights as he develops. He had the right personnel around him last night to protect and allow him to play. Still far too raw a talent to expect him to carry the creative needs this season and let's not scapegoat the lad if he does have a couple of average performances.

    The boro game will be interesting, cant think what an Ainsworth/Warnock game will look like. Let's see if we can grind 3 points.

    COYB.

  • On another positive note I thought Cardiff looked easily poor enough to be dragged down into a relegation fight.

    The more clubs involved in that the better. We've seen enough sides now that we're more than capable of beating and finishing above, and we've got quite a few of them coming up.

    January is an absolutely huge month for us but if we can keep players fit and play like we did last night then we could be on the verge of something very special.

  • Regards Mehmet being to frail, they said that about a little Argentinian who plays for Barcelona. Mehmet also reminds me off George Best doesn't seem to get fouled because he is to clever at moving himself and the ball. Also never panics. No I don't expect him to emulate these to great players but he is more than capable at Championship level. Another great find from our scouts.

  • Mehmeti and Thompson seem to have a very small turning circle (although this lead to Curtis getting booked). Mehmeti has a very simple but effective method of moving that ball 5 yards, quickly and neatly and then find himself with options. It does mean that paired with Curtis or Gape we at last have some balance in flair and endeavour.
    We saw with Eze that he did have anonymous games and we will have to accept that as he learns but I must admit I get excited every time he gets the ball.

  • Clearly now need to tie Mehmeti to a longer contract as I assume all the youngsters only got 1 year deals.

  • edited December 2020

    If he plays like that every week Taffazoli will rightly keep others on the bench, at his best he has both the height and ground coverage we lack, he was able to defend aerially, convert a good corner in to a goal and get out wide to make tackles, he could be exactly what JJ needs alongside him.
    Funny it's similar to how Uche can offer options as his pace and strength make us able to play wide, short or long balls in to him and have him contribute to open play or set pieces, much work to be done to even get close to staying up but so much positive about last night. Mehmeti and Wheeler also combine their obvious areas of skills with buzzing around, joining in and making tackles or interceptions.
    Maybe a realisation somewhere that we need a bit more in the championship and this has set a standard to reach for if everyone can stay fit. Probably need to also note they weren't great despite some relatively big names and their attempts to scrap detracted from their attempts to play. We frustrated them well and they sulked.

  • If Uche can stay fit then we have a chance. I think we need to make sure that he's not run into the ground like Bayo has been. Ideally give him 60-70 minutes each game and then roll Bayo out to give the opposition defence a different problem.

  • @mooneyman said:
    If Uche can stay fit then we have a chance. I think we need to make sure that he's not run into the ground like Bayo has been. Ideally give him 60-70 minutes each game and then roll Bayo out to give the opposition defence a different problem.

    Or Samuel who is closer to being able to continue the sort of game Uche plays, one thing I think that will be key is the ball in to Bayo needs to be straight to him now, we can't expect him to run for it, leap or push people out the way without it being a foul. He can have an impact back to goal a bit deeper but people need to be near him to give him a hand, he's still got a good touch.

  • @chairboyscentral said:
    I was just thinking, if Stewart was fit again tomorrow and we went with the same system (i.e. only one DM, meaning Knight can't be moved forward), would he necessarily get back in the team? I think we have three absolutely top drawer CBs - and Tafazolli restores the symmetry and boosts distribution. Obviously that becomes irrelevant if we play with two DMs, but it's a crazy situation to be in!

    It's certainly excellent for it now to even be a conversation. Before Tafa was back we were much weakened without Stewart in there.

    Wonder if Charles will have much of a look in now? I suppose we can take it he was injured for a fair while, rather than the theory that his condition meant it wasn't wise to have him on the bench. He has made the bench numerous times now.

  • @mooneyman said:
    If Uche can stay fit then we have a chance. I think we need to make sure that he's not run into the ground like Bayo has been. Ideally give him 60-70 minutes each game and then roll Bayo out to give the opposition defence a different problem.

    When we're playing midweek and weekends we can just reverse Bayo's original workload.
    Play him one game out of 4 Instead of playing 3 and coming on in the 4th.
    That should allow a fresher Bayo.

  • @chairboyscentral said:

    I was just thinking, if Stewart was fit again tomorrow and we went with the same system (i.e. only one DM, meaning Knight can't be moved forward), would he necessarily get back in the team? I think we have three absolutely top drawer CBs - and Tafazolli restores the symmetry and boosts distribution. Obviously that becomes irrelevant if we play with two DMs, but it's a crazy situation to be in!

    Don’t want to get too far ahead of myself but, apropos recent mention of back threes and the ability of our players to play that way, I couldn’t help thinking that Stewart, Knight and Tafazolli across the back would probably make a pretty good fist of it. I also ran through the lineup last night in my head and came to the conclusion that the majority of our squad are now well capable of of performing at Championship level. If only we could replay those first half a dozen or so games!

  • edited December 2020

    Last night is probably what Gaz and Dobbo were thinking pre season in regards to how the game panned out. Unfortunately it is only now we get to see the personnel and tactics aligned.

    Bayo was excellent when he came on, his presence to help close out with Bloomers firstly. Secondly hes a intelligent footballer, the lay off late on for Samuel should have given us the third goal to kill the game.

    We will win a lot of points having Bayo on late in games against tiring defences after Uche does his thing for 70 odd minutes.The likes of Scotty K, Fred, Samuel, Mehmeti, GMac, Horgs and Wheeler will be seeing the ball in goalscoring positions, they just need to have their shooting boots on to profit.

  • @mooneyman said:
    If Uche can stay fit then we have a chance. I think we need to make sure that he's not run into the ground like Bayo has been. Ideally give him 60-70 minutes each game and then roll Bayo out to give the opposition defence a different problem.

    Uche had a decent first start once he'd sorted his balance out.

    Would be interested in hearing from people who don't see Samuel as a starting option but enjoyed Uche's game last night. I thought the two are pretty similar in terms of output on limited game time.

  • @Malone said:
    Wonder if Charles will have much of a look in now?

    On the pitch, if everyone stays fit, probably not. Off the pitch, around the club, the training ground - huge. His wisdom and fortitude will remain an inspiration for the others. As I said before the playoffs, we were the best prepared team psychologically and the same continues. As long as we’re not cut adrift from three teams above us, I’d back us to battle our way out of the dropzone across the last 10 game. Charles, Blooms, Bayo will be part of that even if their contribution on the pitch is less than last season.

    And I hope we’re all back at Adams Park for a rousing chorus of β€œWe are staying up” on May 1st.

  • Game changing moment,was went the Cardiff captain , Morrison, had to leave the field.
    Taking nothing away from our performance,but both goals came from headers in the box, which he would have at least challenged for

  • @Manboobs said:

    And I hope we’re all back at Adams Park for a rousing chorus of β€œWe are staying up” on May 1st.

    Wouldn't that be glorious!
    A chance to both thank the team for last season's promotion and congratulate them for staying up.
    And what a fitting finale it could be to a few individuals* - Bayo, Blooms, Charles, JJ - should it come to pass.
    Surely such a tribute to them cannot be denied.

    (*I'm not really suggesting their careers will end, but if they were to hang up their boots what better to have as a final chapter than keeping us in the Championship)

  • @ChinnorBlue said:
    Game changing moment,was went the Cardiff captain , Morrison, had to leave the field.
    Taking nothing away from our performance,but both goals came from headers in the box, which he would have at least challenged for

    Potentially, but would still have backed Taf to win the first. He was super aggressive to get to the ball first. At 6ft 5ins in those positions, if you want it, you will get there first.

    Wheeler ran from deep on the second,so wasnt a static jump. Again would have fancied Wheeler to get there regardless with his prowess in the air.

  • @eric_plant said:
    On another positive note I thought Cardiff looked easily poor enough to be dragged down into a relegation fight.

    The gap between the top third of this league and the rest is astonishing isn’t it? PNE we’re awful against us, and they’re 11th! Barnsley are 8th! There have been season we here I’ve given up hope of staying up by New Years (03/04 for example) but this feels very different.

  • @ChinnorBlue said:
    Game changing moment,was went the Cardiff captain , Morrison, had to leave the field.
    Taking nothing away from our performance,but both goals came from headers in the box, which he would have at least challenged for

    Good parade raining there. Probably has an element of truth but I'm not sure you achieved the 'taking nothing away from our performance' part.

    McCleary's cross and Wheelers header took me back to White Hart Lane and the Weston/Thompson combination. Undefendable in my opinion. Is there any better type of goal than bullet header from a great cross?

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