Cardiff City 0, Luton Town 3
Neil Warnock’s Bluebirds crashed out of the Carabao Cup, but the manager was upbeat about this Friday’s crucial Championship home clash with Fulham.
Promotion favourites Fulham visit Cardiff City in the final fixture before an international break and and manager Warnock said: “Bring them on – we will relish the challenge.
“The lads who didn’t play against Luton Town are ready for what will be our biggest test of the season so far. Anybody who finishes above Fulham will goo up automatically.
“Robert Glatzel has done really well for us and, chatting to him tonight, he is really looking forward to playing against Fulham. He may thrive in that environment. Certainly I have been pleased with his contribution and it will be good to see him score his first goal for Cardiff.”
Warnock’s reacted to the Carabao Cup defeat by saying: “I always thought the first goal would be crucial and we had six or seven chances during the first half. But we didn’t take any.
“Curtis Nelson did well alongside Flinty (Aden Flint), while both full-backs, Cameron Coxe and Ciaron Brown, were excellent. I know Ciaron was caught out before their third goal, but he did well overall.
“It was also good for Callum Paterson to get some playing time.
“Overall, though, we have to be more clinical with opportunities.”
The Bluebirds suffered a second three-goal defeat of the season, crashing out of the Carabao Cup against Championship rivals Luton Town.
Only 4,111 spectators turned out for the cup clash, which is the lowest attendance for a first team match at Cardiff City Stadium, beating the 4,194 who watched a 3-1 FA Cup home win against Colchester five years ago.
Cardiff slumped to a 3-0 defeat at Reading in the Championship a couple of weeks ago – and suffered again during Luton’s visit.
They have one fixture left before the international break and that is against Fulham at home on Friday,
Manager Neil Warnock named six under-23 players in Cardiff City’s 18-strong mhtchday squad for their Carabao Cup second round tie against Luton Town at Cardiff City Stadium.
Ciaron Brown, Cameron Coxe, James Waite, Shamar Moore, Tavio Kouakou d’Almeida and Jack Bodenham were all included, while visitors Luton made 11 changes from their starting line for the win against Barnsley at the weekend.
Skipper Alan Sheehan was included for his first appearance of the season following summer surgery on an Achilles.
Luton dominated during the first half possession and were judged to have had 78 per cent possession. The Hatters won the central midfield battle with Will Vaulks and Callum Paterson struggling to find some cohesion through the middle.
The visitors went ahead when Cardiff failed to close them down In midfield and Junior Hoilett was slow getting back to help Ciaron Brown stop James Bree’s run down the Luton left. Hoilett tried to recover, stretched out a leg and watched in horror as the Bree cut back hit the Canadian and rolled into the far corner.
Cardiff were poor as a unit during the first half, trailed 1-0 at half-time, and Warnock tweaked his formation by sending on 18-year-old Shamar Moore after 65 minutes. Hoilett moved narrower in midfield to add an extra body in central midfield and that did result in better possession stats for the home team.
The Bluebirds, though, conceded a second goal when Sheehan smashed a free-kick past Day from 25 yards. The goalkeeper looked slow to move as the ball fizzed past him into the corner after 63 minutes.
Then City’s back four, who looked organised and solid for a long time, got themselves into a tangle and Jake Jervis ran on to fire past Day (70 mins).
Warnock sent on young substitutes Shamar Moore and James Waite, both making their professional debuts, and both did well on an evening when the Bluebird were disappointing.
The back four did okay until they failed to defend adequately before Luton’s third goal, but in midfield and attack City did not impress.
Now Warnock and his staff are focused on Friday’s clash with Fulham – and the chance to extend their unbeaten Championship run two three matches.
Cardiff City: Joe Day, Cameron Coxe, Curtis Nelson, Aden Flint (capt), Ciaron Brown, Will Vaulks, Callum Paterson, Gavin Whyte (James Waite 70), Junior Hoilett, Omar Bogle (Gary Madine 45), Isaac Vassell (Shamar Moore 46). Subs not used: Brian Murphy (gk), Jack Bodenham, Joe Bennett, d’Almeida.
Luton Town: James Shea, Luke Berry, Elliott Lee, Jake Jervis Callum McManaman 81), Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu, George Moncur, Brendan Galloway, Izzy Brown, James Bree (Luke Bolton 46), Lloyd Jones, Alan Sheehan. Subs not used: Marek Stech (gk), Dan Potts, Andrew Shinnie, Jacob Butterfield, Josh Neufville.
Referee: Tony Harrington
City’s six under-23 players in the matchday squad
32 Cameron Coxe
Man of the match. Crunching tackle to stop his winger early on. Defensively sound, offers an outlet when he goes forward down the right. Lee Peltier is number one right-back for City, but Coxe is composed in possession, disciplined and an able deputy
Age 20. Wales under-21 international born in Merthyr Tydfil. Attended Afan Taf School.
Right-back who made his Bluebirds first team debut in 2017, against Burton Albion in the League Cup. Former club: Hereford (loan).
Welsh youth international who has been selected for the upcoming Wales Under-21 Uefa European qualifying matches against Belgium and Germany.
He has been with Cardiff City since the age of seven 8
30 Ciaron Brown
Operated at left-back against the Hatters. Usually a centre-half, but did exceptionally well playing out of position. Consistent apart from one lapse before Luton’s third goal.
Age 21. Under contract until 2022 after agreeing a new deal this week. Former clubs Wealdstone, Livingston (loan)
It takes a strong defender to learn their trade in the National League North, but that’s exactly what Ciaron Brown did with Wealdstone as a youngster. The central defender, who can also cover at left-back, made more than 50 appearances for the ‘Stones before making the step up and move to South Wales in January 2018 after gaining huge plaudits as non-League level.
Spent the second half of 2018-19 season on loan with Scottish Premier League Livingston, making five first team appearances. He played for the Bluebirds throughout their pre-season tour to American tour and in the home match against OGC Nice – keeping new Newcastle winger Allan Saint-Maximin quiet in a 1-0 City win
37 Jack Bodenham
Teenager who celebrates his 20th birthday on Thursday. Welsh centre-back who impressed on loan with Cymru Premier Champions TNS during the second half of 2018/19.
Towering central defender who has captained Cardiff’s Under-23 side regularly over the past 12 months. First joined the Bluebirds in 2013 at under-14 level.
34 James Waite
Replaced Gavin Whyte after 70 minutes. A professional debut for Waite, who went into the number 10 role, supporting fellow substitute Madine. That is his natural position.
Age 20. Nicknamed ‘Wedgie’. Versatile player who can play anywhere across midfield or in attack and has good technical ability and an outstanding attitude.
Wales youth international is small in stature, around 5ft 6ins tall, but that helps with balance and he is able to wrongful opponents with his movement and tricks.
Travelled with City first team squad to North America for their pre-season tour and has impressed at Under-23 level.
36 Tavio Kouakou d’Almeida
Age: 18. Former Auxerre midfield player who has signed his first professional contract Cardiff City.
The most recent addition to the Cardiff City under-23 squad, having joined officially joined the Bluebirds this week following a successful trial over the summer.
d’Almeida has agreed a three-year-deal at CCS.
Ivory Coast national who was born in France and has featured for the Bluebirds’ under-23 side.
35 Shamar Moore
Replaced Vassell for the second half (46 mins) and joined Bogle in attack. Lively, quick and impressed on his professional debut.
Age 18. English centre-forward. Former club: Reading. Joined City from Reading over the summer and has started the season strongly with coach Andy Legg’s under-23 side.
. . . . . plus a newly signed goalkeeper
28 Brian Murphy (gk)
Back from his honeymoon in South Africa and has signed a four-month contract to stay at Cardiff City until December 22.
Was out of contract over the summer, but the deal suits both the club and player because Murphy is taking his coaching badges with City.
Originally joined the club in 2016, making 10 appearances during his three years as a Bluebird before his contract expired this summer.
Released by the club following their relegation from the Premier League. Offered a new contract following a grade three hamstring tear sustained by Neil Etheridge.
The Irishman played at Manchester City, Ipswich and QPR, before joining the Bluebirds.
One of four first team squad goalkeepers along with Etheridge, Alex Smithies and Joe Day.