Match Report- Cardiff City 2-1 Wycombe Wanderers
By Ben Green
‘Defeat in Wales all but seals an immediate return to league one for Wycombe Wanderers who now require a miracle to stay in the second tier’
Cardiff City were 2-1 winners at home against a brave and battling Wycombe Wanderers side on Saturday, with the Chairboys now requiring a footballing miracle to stay in the Championship. A brace from Kieffer Moore ultimately proved the difference as Mick McCarthy’s men recorded their first win in six games.
After a tentative start, it was Cardiff who struck first in the 22nd minute, as Kieffer Moore, dribbled through the Wycombe defence and unleased a low drive inside the chairboys’ penalty area, which flew past Wanderers keeper David Stockdale into the bottom corner.
Gareth Ainsworth’s men had given themselves a real chance of survival, having managed three wins in their last six games, and in the 43rd minute, hopes of an improbable escape were ignited once again, as Joe Jacobsen tucked home a penalty after Fred Onyendima had been fouled by bluebird’s skipper Sean Morrison. A 4th goal of the season for the Welshman, returning to club which handed him his Championship debut over fourteen years ago!
Despite a brave second half from the Championships bottom side, Moore and Cardiff got their second of the game in the 71st minute as the striker found space in the box to drive home his 23rd goal of the season.
A late red card from Cardiff substitute Will vaulks proved immaterial as despite some last gasp pressure from Wycombe, including keeper David Stockdale finding himself in the box from several corners, Mick McCarthy’s men hung on to record their first win in six games.
For Cardiff, this result lacks real significance, with the bluebirds out of the relegation and promotion pictures, one eye will be on next season as they travel to Birmingham City a week from today.
As for Wycombe, recent results had given the team genuine belief that they could miraculously survive at this level. Despite defeats for fellow relegation threatened teams, Sheffield Wednesday, Rotherham and Derby, today’s loss means that Gareth Ainsworth’s side need to win both their remaining games, hope Derby lose theirs and turn around a goal deficit of 13 with Wayne Rooney’s men.
Here’s what both managers had to say…
Mick McCarthy on Gareth Ainsworth’s Wycombe…
“I feel for Gareth, because he’s done a great job in getting them up and scrapping almost until the very end. I can empathise with him, but we wanted to win the game, and that’s what we managed to do”.
He later discussed Bluebirds Striker Kieffer Moore…
"He knows we haven't got a direct replacement; he's going to play all the games. But he doesn't take his foot off the gas, he keeps going.
"He's a real threat, a very effective centre-forward.”
Gareth Ainsworth on Wycombe’s chances of survival...
"If that's it, then the positive for us is the chance to get another promotion on our CVs next season.
"We don't want to finish bottom, and that's our next challenge. I want to come back to this level.
"I don't regret anything. I stand here as the manager of Wycombe Wanderers who didn't quite do enough to keep us in the Championship, but I looked oblivion in the face at Torquay seven years ago.”
Man of the Match: Kieffer Moore