The club, fans, players and Slade

‘ The club, fans, players and Slade ‘

By Carl Curtis

What a great feeling, coming away from a game that you have won against a play off rival, in glorious sunshine and a new record attendance at the stadium for a club league match.

28,680 was the official attendance announced but even if some of those who had tickets didn’t turn up, I still believe there was over 26,500 in there today and I have said it before and will say it again, well done Cardiff City for doing something to engage with their fanbase.

I have no problem whatsoever if they did something similar, or very cheap tickets, for the next game, why not get as many in there as possible while we are pushing for the play offs.

With everything set up for the players to go out and show what they are capable of, they certainly didn’t let us down.

Each player gave everything to the cause and from the first to the final whistle, they battled and did their individual tasks well.

Not one player had an off day but stand out performers for myself were Lex Immers and Stuart O’Keefe, with Immers my choice for man of the match.

City dominated the game in the first half without really threatening the Derby goal on too many occasions but they certainly spoiled Derby’s gameplay and thoroughly deserved to go in at half time one goal to the good.

Whittingham crossed a pinpoint corner which Bruno Manga met superbly to bullet a header towards the back of the net that left Scott Carson and his defence rooted.

The second half was more of a spectacle with Derby looking to offer more than they did in the first half but only one spell of bad defending allowed, actually gifted, Derby an equaliser that they never looked like getting.

Marshall was slow to react to a ball lifted in with little pace and Chris Martin showed more willingness to get to the ball and duly did, nodding the ball of a helpless Marshall and even though Manga desperately tried to defend the header on the near post it was to no avail.

City’s fans and players responded immediately, the crowd got to their feet and supported the team from the restart and the players took their level to the next gear and had Derby on the back foot straight away, Craig Noone really should have put us back in front straight away but Carson made a low save to his right when the winger was through one on one, Whittingham drilled the rebound back across the goal and Lex Immers missed a tap in by inches.

The City record crowd stuck with it and urged the team on and we got our just rewards when from another Whittingham corner, O’Keefe turned on the six yard box to score from a Sean Morrison knock down.

It was a tense final few minutes of the allocated ninety but City continued to defend well and we’re still looking to extend their lead on the counter attack.

On the evidence of today, I believe City have a fantastic opportunity to make the play offs and I think it will be Derby that will be replaced.

We go to Burnley on Tuesday confident that we can compete with the best this division has to offer and if we come away with something won’t surprise me one bit.

Well done to the club, the fans, the team and Russell Slade, I am buzzing this evening and excited what the next seven games bring.