Well that didn't go as planned, did it!? No sir. In case you didn't see the match, there are plenty of neutral reports out there, so I won't go through it word for word, instead I'll share a couple of my thoughts about the game.
Firstly, Swansea and Cardiff both had the exact same amount of shots on target (3) and off target (6), so the chances were there, it was just finishing them off that Swansea couldn't get right again. Generally the Swans were much better in the second half after a poor start (almost an abysmal start, had Bothroyd's 30 second strike gone in). The truth is Cardiff looked a lot more hungry for this win. It wasn't until Allen and Beattie came on that Swansea started fighting for it.
Luke Moore looked, as he has done since he first pulled on the white shirt, limp and unlikely to score. Some say the occasion got to him, but he didn't look like he wanted a goal. In contrast, Beattie came on and battled for every ball, doing more for the team with his first touch than Moore did all game. I'm not sure why Rodgers insists on playing Moore as a first team player. He has yet to score a goal and goals are what Swansea need. As I mentioned in my previous blog, it almost seems like Swansea are playing with 10 men as the amount of work Moore does is nominal. Maybe Rodgers starts with Moore so often because he bought him and doesn't want to look like he wasted money. I can almost sympathise: I've bought books in the past that looked great in Waterstones, but when I get home and start reading I quickly realise it's not what the cover promised. However I'll keep reading because I don't want to admit I wasted money on a bad judgement. I'm not saying Moore isn't good, but he needs to find his feet soon and start doing what he is paid so handsomely to do; work hard for the team and score some goals!
After the damp start by the Swans and as the first half of a tight game ended, everyone knew the next goal would win the game. It's such a shame that the goal wasn't one of the Scott Sinclair near misses. After his dazzling run up the wing, passing three defenders, two shots went wide. Cardiff responded with a superb strike by Craig Bellamy, one which would win the game. Some may put the goal down to luck, but Cardiff had hit the post twice in the match already, so one was bound to go in! No, Bellamy took a great shot and got a deserved goal for Cardiff. Swansea eventually threw everyone forward, with Ashley Williams playing as a striker for the last five minutes, but to no avail. I guess in a neutrally perfect world, both teams should have walked away with a point – Swansea for their second half display and Cardiff for their desire throughout the match.
A word on the referee. He started out fine, letting the game flow well, however he was unable to stamp his authority as time went on and Cardiff players ran riot. Chopra should have had three yellow cards, but he escaped with little more than a light talking to. A poor display today Mr Halsey – you technically ruined a South Wales derby.
Moving my attention to the supporters who caused the commotion near the halfway line in the East Stand: shame on you. You embarrassed your fellow supporters and caused unnecessary trouble, just because you had a few too many pints. The stewards aren't there to have frustration taken out on them, that is not their job. Taking a swing at a steward (who might well have been a Swansea fan too) is shameful. Cardiff supporters must have loved your tantrum. Stupid.
So to all you true supporters, the ones who hold season tickets or attend whatever games they can, not just because Cardiff are playing “the scum”... I am sorry with the way things turned out today. Just remember: it is only one game. Swansea got the away win in Cardiff last November, so this has just cancelled it out. Disappointing, but it is just one loss. Plenty of the season left to bounce back.
Looking ahead to next week and an away win in Middlesbrough would take some of the sickening sting out of today. But for now, that sting will remain through the night and into a drizzly Monday morning.