Cardiff City won the south Wales derby and dealt a huge blow to Swansea’s hopes of automated promotion with a hard-fought 1-0 victory at Liberty Arena.
Protector Aden Flint headed the Bluebirds in front, reacting when the Swans stopped working to handle a long throw.
Kieffer Moore missed a golden possibility to double the lead and Swansea poured on the pressure in the second half.
Nevertheless, Andre Ayew struck the within the post with Swansea’s finest chance.
The triumph lifts Cardiff to 8th in the Championship, 4 points off the play-off berths, while Swansea remain third.
South Wales derbies are constantly worth a watch since of the intensity of the competition, but the contest takes on even more indicating when the stakes are high, which was definitely the case here with promotion still a realistic go for both sides.
Swansea made four modifications to the side hammered at Bournemouth in midweek with Marc Guehi, Jay Fulton and Jake Bidwell recalled and Morgan Whittaker offered a very first Swans start in a huge contest.
The visitors were hit by an injury to Perry Ng that required midfielder Joe Ralls into an unknown wing-back function, while Harry Wilson was remembered to lead the line with his Wales team-mate Moore.
Swansea had utterly dominated Cardiff when winning the reverse fixture 2-0 in December, and it was the hosts who had the first chance, but Dillon Phillips tipped Conor Hourihane’s free-kick around the post, before Hourihane was required off by injury after only 18 minutes.
Already the Swans tracked as they failed to clear a Will Vaulks long toss, with Freddie Woodman producing a wonderful save to reject Marlon Load, only to be helpless as Flint responded quickest to head house.
No protector in the Premier League or English Football League has scored more goals since 2014 than Flint, who has 38 over that period.
Cardiff’s set-pieces and long throws are constantly a hazard, however the size distinction between the teams was underlined several times in the very first half with Flint heading wide from another long throw and Sean Morrison heading over from a Vaulks free-kick.
Vaulks was main to everything in the very first duration and his wise through ball discovered Leandro Bacuna, but Woodman parried away his effort, prior to Bacuna was simply except kipping down Moore’s cross.
Cardiff maybe was worthy of more for such a dominant display screen, but Moore missed out on a golden possibility after Woodman’s error, rounding the goalkeeper just to produce a weak shot that Ryan Bennett gratefully cleared off the line.
Swansea had actually lost just one of their past 15 league video games at home and began the second half well, with Whittaker screening Phillips and Ayew curling a free-kick simply large.
Cardiff missed a huge possibility on the counter-attack on 65 minutes when Wilson’s curling effort was saved by Woodman, along with the rebound, before sustained Swansea pressure saw Ayew head versus the within the post from Fulton’s cross.
Swansea’s pressure was relentless as Korey Smith fired over and shot after shot was blocked, with Cardiff’s defence exceptional as they actually threw their bodies in the method of shots to maintain their lead and the south Wales bragging rights.
The Swans ended up the game practically camped in the Cardiff half, with Whittaker missing out on an opportunity late on as he fired simply large after finding space in package, while Lowe’s effort was conserved by Phillips on a day where the ball just would not succumb to the Swans.
Swansea head coach Steve Cooper:
” There’s terrific frustration due to the fact that it’s an enormous game for everybody and we have actually come out on the incorrect end of it.
” The method it’s taken place as well, at the minute it’s difficult to get our head around it. We have conceded off a long toss which we understood was coming.
” Then it’s been all us. We have actually played some fantastic football, we have actually created lots of chances, we have controlled every single stat you wish to control apart from the most crucial one and that’s ball game. It’s a hard one to take.”
Cardiff manager Mick McCarthy:
” We have actually needed to be really strong as a protective system.
” Perhaps it was our night, you carry a little bit of luck and I more than happy to bring a little bit of luck.
” It was a really, very difficult made victory and we are extremely happy.
” It was a big win, we understand how big a game this is in this part of the world and we showed that togetherness again today, how much it suggested to the gamers to get the win.”
- 1 Woodman
- 26 Naughton Replacemented For Lowe at76′ minutes
- 2 Bennett
- 5 Guehi
- 23 Roberts
- 6 Fulton Replacemented For Dhanda at80′ minutes
- 8 Grimes
- 24 Bidwell Substituted for Manning at76′ minutes
- 14 Hourihane Substituted for Smith at18′ minutes
- 10 A Ayew
- 17 Whittaker
- 3 Manning
- 7 Smith
- 9 Lowe
- 15 Routledge
- 18 Hamer
- 21 Dhanda
- 22 Latibeaudiere
- 31 Cooper
- 44 Cabango
- 1 Phillips
- 4 Morrison Booked at 45 mins
- 5 Flint
- 30 Brown Reserved at 90 mins
- 28 Sang
- 6 Vaulks Booked at 81 mins
- 21 Load
- 8 Ralls
- 7 Bacuna Replacemented For Murphy at66′ minutes
- 10 Moore
- 23 Wilson Replacemented For Ojo at84′ minutes
- 11 Murphy
- 12 Smithies
- 15 Williams
- 19 Watters
- 27 Ojo
- 29 M Harris
- 33 Hoilett
- 40 Colwill
- 41 Bowen
Match ends, Swansea City 0, Cardiff City 1.
Second Half ends, Swansea City 0, Cardiff City 1.
Ryan Bennett (Swansea City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Kieffer Moore (Cardiff City).
Foul by Matt Grimes (Swansea City).
Kieffer Moore (Cardiff City) wins a complimentary kick in the defensive half.
Attempt conserved. Morgan Whittaker (Swansea City) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the leading left corner. Helped by Connor Roberts.
Effort missed. Yan Dhanda (Swansea City) best footed shot from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Helped by Matt Grimes following a set piece circumstance.
Ciaron Brown (Cardiff City) is revealed the yellow card for a bad foul.
Morgan Whittaker (Swansea City) wins a totally free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Ciaron Brown (Cardiff City).
Effort missed. Morgan Whittaker (Swansea City) left footed shot from the centre of the box is close, however misses to the left.
Attempt blocked. Morgan Whittaker (Swansea City) left footed shot from the centre of the box is obstructed.
Attempt blocked. André Ayew (Swansea City) left footed shot from outside package is obstructed.
Substitution, Cardiff City. Sheyi Ojo replaces Harry Wilson.
Corner, Swansea City. Conceded by Sean Morrison.
Attempt blocked. Yan Dhanda (Swansea City) best footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Helped by Jamal Lowe.
Effort blocked. Jamal Lowe (Swansea City) ideal footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Helped by Ryan Manning with a cross.
Will Vaulks (Cardiff City) is revealed the yellow card.
Morgan Whittaker (Swansea City) wins a complimentary kick in the protective half.