Date: 1st February 2012 at 10:52am
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Cardiff City escpaed St Mary Stadium with a creditable point after surviving a late Southampton onslaught in a 1-1 draw. Both sides would have been delighted by the result elsewhere as leaders West Ham were demolished 5-1 by lowly Ipswich Town meaning this was a point gained for the 2nd and 3rd placed sides.

City had good chances, including an Aron Gunnarsson header in the opening moments. He missed the target, as did Kenny Miller later on with a wayward chip when well placed. Ricky Lambert was a constant menace for the Saints, but it was Adam Lallana who really tested the Bluebirds. Both players went close during the first half, while Lambert’#s appeals for a penalty against Ben Turner were denied.

City did take a first half lead when a corner wasn’t cleared by the Saints, and with the defenders hesitating – Craig Conway struck low through the crowd. It was a relatively even first half, but I felt the Bluebirds just shaded it and were pleased to be 1-0 up.

After the break, Southampton were dominant, again appealing for a penalty against Andrew Taylor before they were granted a spot-kick when Lallana’s close quarters cross struck McNaughton’s hand. The outcome was never in doubt as Lambert crashed home the penalty.

After that, City were under pressure – though Southampton seemed overly reliant on long cross-field passes. Gerrard and McPahil produced stunning blocks to deny shots on goal, while Marshall and the centre-halves stood up well to late aerial bombardment. There were a few dangerous moments for Cardiff too, but often the final ball lacked qaulity when we broke.

All-in-all, a very satisfactory point for the Bluebirds against genuine promotion contenders who are excellent at home and have strengthened further in the January transfer window. Any visitors to Southampton should be content with a point this season – and City deserve credit.