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Time ticking on Harris as Cardiff falter - Interview
Tuesday, 19th Jan 2021 14:49 by Clive Whittingham

An already frustrating and inconsistent season at Cardiff has descended into a run of five straight league and cup defeats, raising question marks over the future of manager Neil Harris according to Owen Deacon from the Three Little Birds blog.

A good winning run, now a string of defeats, how have Cardiff done since we last spoke?

Recently Cardiff have been in terrible form, winning two games and losing four. The squad look lost and the manager is the one guiding them to the middle of nowhere.

Cardiff league results so far…
Cardiff 0-2 Sheff Wed Windass 4, Rhodes 44
Forest 0-2 Cardiff Moore 3, 40
Cardiff 1-2 Reading Tomlin 81 – Morrison 47, Joao 66
Blackburn 0-0 Cardiff
Preston 0-1 Cardiff Ojo 52
Cardiff 1-1 Bournemouth Wilson 62 – Solanke 35
Cardiff 1-1 Middlesbrough Ojo 70 – Saville 36
Derby 1-1 Cardiff Waghorn 24 – Moore 77
QPR 3-2 Cardiff Chair 15, Kane 27, Ball 90 – Ralls pen 47, 85
Cardiff 3-0 Barnsley Hoilett 4, Ralls pen 45, Wilson 77
Cardiff 0-1 Bristol City Martin 2
Millwall 1-1 Cardiff Smith 35 – Moore 79
Coventry 1-0 Cardiff Walker 54
Cardiff 4-0 Luton Morrison 5, Harris 9, Moore 59, Ojo 82
Cardiff 3-0 Huddersfield Moore 35, 68, Glatzel 85
Watford 0-1 Cardiff Moore 43
Stoke 1-2 Cardiff Morrison og 25 – Glatzel 66, Morrison 76
Cardiff 0-2 Swansea Lowe 6, 72
Cardiff 3-2 Birmingham Glatzel 10, Wilson 77, Morrison 89 – Roberts 31, Sanchez 57
Norwich 2-0 Cardiff Buendia 27, Cantwell 70
Cardiff 2-3 Brentford Vaulks 45, 76 – Canos 50, 65, 73
Wycombe 2-1 Cardiff Tafazolli 33, Wheeler 63 – Hoilett 90
Cardiff 1-2 Norwich Ralls 65 – Hanley 3, Cantwell 22

Top six was the aim, even when we spoke in October, but it looks a long way off currently – why?

Our tactics have been one-dimensional, often opting to hoof the ball rather than playing it on the floor. On top of that, we have a number of injuries to key players.

Starting to see some social media unrest about Neil Harris’ performance, where are you with him?

Personally I can’t see Harris taking us any further, with the squad looking less and less interested. I think it’s only a matter of time until he’s shown the door.

January transfer window activity?

At the time of writing it looks like we’re in for a few players. We’ve announced the signing of Max Watters, a young striker with 13 in 16 League 2, he’s set to go straight into the side. It’s also rumours that we’ve had a bid accepted Jack Simpson, a centre back from Bournemouth. We’re also heavily linked with two right backs - Perry Ng from Crewe for a small fee and Frédéric Guilbert from Aston Villa (loan). If any of them sign I’m sure we’ll be seeing them feature on Wednesday. Cardiff have been very patient in transfer windows recently, doing the majority of business towards the end. Something which Bluebirds fans can find frustrating!

Summer Ins >>> Kieffer Moore, 28, CF, Wigan, £1.98m >>> Dillon Phillips, 25, GK, Charlton, Undisclosed >>> Jordi Osei-Tutu, 21, RB, Arsenal, Loan >>> Harry Wilson, 23, AM, Liverpool, Loan >>> Sheyi Ojo, 23, RW, Liverpool, Loan >>> Filip Benkovic, 23, CB, Leicester, Loan

Summer Outs >>> Callum Paterson, 25, CF, Sheff Wed, £495k >>> Neil Etheridge, 30, GK, Birmingham, Undisclosed >>> Danny Ward, 28, CF, Huddersfield, Free >>> Jazz Richards, 29, LB, Released >>> Matt Connolly, 32, CB, Released >>> Omar Bogle, 28, CF, Charlton, Free >>> Nathaniel Mendez Laing, 28, RW, Sacked/Misconduct >>> Ciaron Brown, 22, CB, Livingston, Loan >>> Aden Flint, 31, CB, Sheff Wed, Loan

Winter Ins >>> Max Watters, 21, CF, Crawley, Undisclosed >>> Perry Ng, 24, RB, Crewe, Undisclosed

Winter Outs >>> Gavin Whyte, 24, RW, Hull, Loan >>> Joe Day, 30, GK, Bristol Rovers, Loan

How do you see the second half of the season going?

It’s going one of two ways. Either we’re going to keep going the way we are with our manager and end up in mid-table mediocrity. Or he somehow managers to turn it around and we get a run going. If it’s the former then I think he won’t last long.

Links >>> Official Website >>> Three Little Birds – Blog >>> CCMB – Message Board >>> Wales Online – Local Paper >>> Mauve and Yellow – Blog

The Twitter @ThreeBluebirds_, @OwenRhysDEacon, @loftforwords

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TacticalR added 15:17 - Jan 19
Thanks to Owen.

It sounds pretty gloomy. Harris looked very limited at Millwall, and looked foolish getting rid of Eze. On the other hand, he got Cardiff into the play-offs. As Cardiff beat us to the signature of Kieffer Moore it looked as though they had the tools in place to have another run this season, but perhaps Harris' limitations have come to the fore.

francisbowles added 11:13 - Jan 20
Thanks Owen and Clive. Noticeable the three recent home defeats have been against three very good sides. It doesn't really have much bearing on tonight.

As usual we will have to play well and take our chances to get anything. Hopefully, MW has been working with a BOSless team to give Charlie some service.

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Letters from Wiltshire #34 by wessex_exile
Letters from Wiltshire #33 by wessex_exile
Letters from Wiltshire #32 by wessex_exile
Fifty years ago yesterday, Colchester United of the 4th Division pulled off the greatest cup giant-killing ever, beating 1st Division Leeds United 3-2 at Layer Road. Watched by 16,000, and the Match of the Day cameras, Dick Graham’s U’s, a rag-tag band of mostly aging journeymen, defied the odds to defeat arguably the greatest club side in Europe at the time. “The greatest cup giant-killing ever” is a bold claim, and over the years various football magazines and websites have run their own polls of which was the greatest. Whilst that day at Layer Rd always features, as the years have gone by other feats fresher in the memory have been put forward as a candidate – we probably all remember Ronnie Radford’s screamer against Newcastle, Sutton’s exploits, or even Bradford City quite recently at Stamford Bridge – but these pale into insignificance when you pause to reflect on the Don Revie side that we beat that day. Sprake, Cooper, Charlton, Hunter, Lorimer, Giles etc – all full internationals, all household names – the only one missing was Billy Bremner, and that was because he was injured. By comparison, all we had to offer was Ray Crawford – at his peak arguably on a par with some in the Leeds side, but that peak had been ten years earlier playing for Ipswich and England. Eleven heroes didn’t just try and hold out against Leeds United, they took the game to their illustrious opponents with such tenacity, grit and no small amount of flair, and before we knew it, the U’s were 3-0 in the lead. As legs tired, Leeds got back into the game with goals from Hunter and Giles, but we held firm – typified at the death by Graham Smith pulling off an impossible save to ensure the U’s achieved the greatest cup giant-killing ever!
Letters from Wiltshire #31 by wessex_exile
And so the dust settles on another transfer window closing, and despite (my) expectations that the possibility of incoming business was going to be remote, we have instead seen a veritable flurry of activity, with no less than three coming in. Big Frank Nouble, making a very welcome return on loan from Plymouth Argyle, of course needs no introduction. Neither really does feisty Brendan Sarpong-Wiredu, here on loan last season, and this time signed full-time from Charlton Athletic for an undisclosed fee. Actually paying hard cash for someone did come as a surprise, presumably offset by the sale of Cohen Bramall to Lincoln for a similarly undisclosed fee. However, the fact that the Addicks have insisted on not only a sell-on clause, but a rarely used buy-back clause too, suggests (a) Wiredu’s signing fee probably wasn’t too high, and (b) Charlton are protecting those finances with these clauses. The last one, which would have been a complete surprise for me were it not for a contact leaking me the news earlier yesterday, is left-back Josh Doherty on loan from Crawley. Josh was only announced once outgoing left-back Bramall was confirmed, and presumably his loan is directly related to part-time fashion model, TV and radio celeb and former left-back Mark Wright signing for Crawley on a non-contract game-by-game basis in December. We have also released seven from the academy, Ollie Kensdale, Miquel Scarlett, Sammie McLeod, Michael Fernandes, Ollie Sims, Danny Collinge and Matt Weaire, and I’m sure we all wish them the best for the future.
Letters from Wiltshire #30 by wessex_exile

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