Manager Russell Slade has conceded the best team won in our two nil defeat to Derby County at the weekend.
Video – Derby Highlights (a)
Speaking to Wales Online in his post game press conference, Slade admitted with a two nil defeat it could’ve been more given a really poor display on the day.
He also admitted it was largely a reality check by our in form opponents as they dominated the match.
‘You are always disappointed when you lose a football match. We lost to the better side, sometimes you have to put your hands up. I thought Derby were very good. We matched them for most of the first-half, both teams had opportunities. They pressed us high up the field in the second-half. The disappointing thing was that we had possession before both the goals. We gave the ball away so that`s disappointing. We`ve got to be more reliable on the ball which we are in training very often, but in the big games we have to be more reliable when it comes to keeping the ball. But I have to be honest, the better team won the game. That was the best side we`ve played against all season.’
With victory over Reading in the last game, Slade was forced into changes for the game with Peter Whittingham and Kagisho Dikgacoi returning, and Joe Ralls going out wide again and he admitted after the match that it probably wasn’t the best way to line up the midfield against a very on fire Derby.
‘We lost Gunnarsson with an Achilles, he had a slight problem. He had been in good form so we had to restructure and Pilkington was ill. That forced us into changes. After the Reading game Ralls would most likely have started in the middle, but we had to restructure. I thought Kenwyne Jones was a very good target man for us today and Sammy Ameobi injected a bit of pace when he came on, he`s got the energy to do that. It`s safe to say our options in terms of forwards and wide areas were a bit limited.’
One thing Slade didn’t want to do was get carried away with the disappointment because Cardiff are still only three points off the play offs and what’s important for him now is a reaction when we host Burnley in the next match because obviously some consistency and momentum in results is key if we are to challenge.
‘We have to grab the momentum again now and galvanise ourselves to go on another run, if you win three games you can shoot yourself back up the table and back in contention.’
Helping that might be the return to the pitch for Kiko Macheda and Bruno Ecuele Manga who both got a run out in today’s Under 21 victory over Watford.
Macheda got 45 minutes under his belt and found the net, with Manga getting an hour under his belt following his bench appearance against Derby.
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