Blogs & Opinion


David Jones:

Most Popular Posts:

Swansea v Cardiff: Wales set for biggest Premier League game, says David Jones

David Jones - David Jones Posted 6th February 2014 view comments

Derbies don't come much more fierce; rivalries more intense; games much bigger than the skirmish in South Wales this Saturday.

When Swansea and Cardiff meet for only the second time in the top division of English football there will be so much more than the usual quarrel to resolve. Both proud clubs are fighting for their futures.

Cardiff won the first derby between the sides in the Premier League

Cardiff won the first derby between the sides in the Premier League

Cardiff, the Premier League newcomers, have been catapulted from crisis to crisis off the pitch but they've been thrilled by the ride and they want more.

Swansea, who for three seasons have strolled amongst the elite with style and grace, have been hit hard by the demands of their success; a European adventure which has tested their resources to the limit and a slump in domestic form which this week cost Michael Laudrup his job.

It seems football fans were outraged by Laudrup's exit from the Liberty stadium: all those apart from the Swansea fans themselves.

David Jones
Quotes of the week

Swansea v Cardiff

Saturday Night Football\nSky Sports 1 HD\n5.30pm

It seems football fans were outraged by Laudrup's exit from the Liberty stadium: all those apart from the Swansea fans themselves.

They knew it was never a comfortable marriage. There had been too many tales of player unrest, of dressing room cliques and quarrels that never end well. They had seen performances decline in front of their eyes and they knew change was coming.

There had been notable highs along the way, such as the League Cup success, but the slip in standards was troubling chairman Huw Jenkins long before he made the decision to sack a manager for the first time in almost 10 years.

Enemy

You will do well to meet a calmer, more thoughtful and reflective chairman than Jenkins in any league; so steeped in his club and it's traditions, so inherently linked with his club's legendary rise and for that he has earned almost total trust from Swansea fans.

They will feel that even in the hands of a managerial novice like Garry Monk, they are better placed to take on the pressures and demands of a relegation scrap, which just happens to start against the enemy.

To make matters worse the Bluebirds are flush with confidence after coming from behind to beat Norwich last Saturday to record their first league win under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Kenwyne Jones and Wilfried Zaha have added a more potent attacking thrust to Solskjaer's team, while the manager has already shown he has the guile to affect games from the sidelines just as he once did as a player.

It was a win Cardiff desperately needed after four straight defeats had threatened to leave them cast adrift, but now they know a victory on Saturday would leave them with an identical record as their neighbours.

Should they lose, the gap will open up to six points again. Both clubs could survive and prosper; both could fall from grace. Wales has never seen a more important Premier League game.

back to top

Other Football Experts:

Latest Posts in Football:

Latest News RSS feeds

Chelsea in good shape for PSG

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is likely to have a strong squad to select from for their Champions League game with Paris Saint-Germain.

'Let's throw some punches'

New Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood says he is planning to install a more attacking approach at the club.

LVG: We must sign a midfielder

Louis van Gaal has confirmed that Manchester United will attempt to sign a creative midfield player this summer.

Live transfer updates

Live transfer news as Louis van Gaal makes the signing a creative midfielder his top priority this summer.

Bony trains with new team-mates

Wilfried Bony has trained with Man City for the first time after winning the Africa Cup of Nations with Ivory Coast.

Features

Tim Sherwood's to-do list: Five things the new Aston Villa manager must make a priority if he is to succeed

Tim Sherwood's to-do list: Five things the new Aston Villa manager must make a priority if he is to succeed

As Tim Sherwood settles into his first day at work as Aston Villa manager, the challenge of keeping the Premier League perennials in the top flight begins.

Pogba? Verratti? Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal wants a creative midfielder but who should he sign?

Pogba? Verratti? Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal wants a creative midfielder but who should he sign?

Only a fortnight after the transfer window closed, Louis van Gaal has set tongues wagging again by admitting that Manchester United need to sign a creative midfielder.

Xabi Alonso impressing at Bayern Munich under Pep Guardiola and eyeing a third Champions League medal

Xabi Alonso impressing at Bayern Munich under Pep Guardiola and eyeing a third Champions League medal

Adam Bate looks at Xabi Alonso's fine form with Bayern Munich and why he can make history this season.