Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has said that he feels the potential is definitely there within the team for success and he feels our performance against Chelsea today was proof of that.
Cardiff took the lead and held out against Chelsea for the vast majority of the game before they got back into it and took the win, but for large parts of the game Ole was extremely happy with our play and the potential he believes it affords us moving forward into next season, where the aim will obviously be to win promotion back to the Premiership so we can show quickly what we’ve learnt from this season.
Speaking to the Official Site following the game, the gaffer explained.
‘We were close against a very good side. I think we defended fantastically with some last ditch blocks and we kept a good shape. It wasn’t to be though because we couldn’t keep them at bay. They created down the sides, bombing on through their full backs. To be one up for so long, I think my players deserve praise. I thought my players did really well.’
As for our goal, whilst acknowledging it came from a deflection, he thought it was great team play and a nice goal.
Of course, it’s now a case of all eyes to the summer, which players we can hopefully keep despite interest from others, and then it’s down to strengthening ourselves so we have a good season next term and hopefully bounce back.
‘I think everyone can see the signs that the players here have a lot of quality. There will be a few changes, in my view it’s important to try and keep hold of the most important ones. We need to strengthen and we will be ready for the season when it starts.’
Of course, there are also high hopes for youngsters Rhys Healey and Tom James when it comes to their continued development and Ole said that ahead of the new season it was important to give them both a taste of action as substitutes, because they have both worked incredibly hard in the U21s and not only deserved a little reward, but also needed to know there is the pathway through to the first team and that he will select them when they prove themselves ready for a shot again.
Of course, they both have a long way to go and a lot of work still to do, but for the gaffer ‘they’ve had a taste of what they can be part of’ as long as they keep their heads down and continue to work hard.
As for the substitution of Mats Daehli and Gary Medel, Ole explained that Daehli has been suffering with an illness and by the time he was brought off was struggling for energy, and Medel apparently has been carrying a bit of a groin problem, so with the World Cup on the horizon now, he thought it only right to give him a bit of a break in the game so he didn’t risk his fitness overly with the summer in mind.
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