Cardiff City v West Ham United. Match preview

Last updated : 24 October 2003 By Footymad Previewer
Kav's back
One of the most eagerly anticipated games of the season takes place at Ninian Park this Saturday. West Ham United visit Cardiff for a live Sky game that promises to be a cracker. City got back to winning ways last weekend with a 3 - 1 success at Coventry. West Ham have drawn their last three games.

The teams met a few weeks ago in the Carling Cup. West Ham came from 2 down to win 3 - 2. Lennie says that will not be allowed to happen again

"Saturday's match will be entirely different to that cup game. For the Carling Cup match I rotated a few players. We did all right in that game, but I knew that three or four of my players would be tired after 70 or 75 minutes. That won't happen in Saturday's game."

Lawrence welcomes his skipper Graham Kavanagh back to the squad after suspension. He is the only addition to the players on duty at Highfield Rd.

City squad

Alexander, Croft, Vidmar, Gabbidon, Barker, Robinson, Langley, (two from Kavanagh, Bonner or Whalley), Earnshaw, Gordon.

Subs from Margetson, Collins, Prior, Gray, (the left out midfielder), Maxwell.

Kavanagh has been in superb form and it would be a major shock if he did not start the game. I would expect Gareth Whalley to make way but it could be Mark Bonner. We will only know that on Saturday.

Gavin Gordon will get another chance up front in the absence of the injured Thorne and Lee and the suspended Campbell. Also suspended still is Willie Boland. He and Campbell also miss next Tuesdays home clash with Watford.

Earnshaw v Defoe will of couse make the headlines. The two most exciting players in the first division. Earnie is currently the leading scorer in all four divisions.

West Ham this time are under the control of Alan Pardew, the former Reading boss took over this week and saw his side draw at Upton Park against Nottingham Forest.

Prdew has brought in two new player. Hayden Mullins has signed a permanent contract after being bought from Crystal palce. Robbie Stockdale joins on loan from Middlesbrough.

Since the teams met on September 23rd both have had reasonable runs of form but not spectacular. West Ham have played 6 league games, incredibly 5 of them at Upton Park. In those 5 they only won once and drew 4. The one away game was a 1 - 0 win at Derby.

Cardiff have played 5 times. A win and a draw at home followed by three on the bounce away. A defeat was followed by a draw then a win last weekend.

West Ham last lined up v Forest in midweek

James, Repka, Dailly, Mullins, Quinn, Hutchison, Lee, Carrick, Etherington, Connolly, Defoe. Subs: Bywater, Ferdinand, Kilgallon, Byrne, Mellor.

Stockdale will make his debut when he joins the team tomorrow. Former City loan player Stephen Bywater, is the reserve keeper.

Cardiff are currently 7 points behind West Ham who sit in 5th place, 7 places above us. City need to pick up home points against the Hammers and Watford to cement their place in the top half of the table.

Cardiff and West Ham appear to be Sky's favourite Division 1 teams so lets hope for some sparkling entertainment and hopefully 3 points to Cardiff City. The Carling Cup game between the teams was live and produced 5 goals. City's other Sky games this season were home v Derby (won 4 - 1) and away at Coventry (won 3 - 1).

For a detailed analysis of the head-to-head between the two sides, click here

Recent encounters between the teams:
2003/2004Tue 23 SepCardiff2-3West HamLC
1980/1981Wed 06 MayCardiff0 - 0West HamDIV2
1980/1981Tue 07 OctWest Ham1 - 0CardiffDIV2
1979/1980Sat 19 AprCardiff0 - 1West HamDIV2
1979/1980Sat 24 NovWest Ham3 - 0CardiffDIV2
1978/1979Fri 11 MayCardiff0 - 0West HamDIV2
1978/1979Mon 16 AprWest Ham1 - 1CardiffDIV2