Neil Warnock expects Cardiff duel with Southampton
Neil Warnock says individual errors and refereeing mistakes led to Cardiff losing at Wolves in a defeat which keeps them in the relegation zone.
By Nick Howson
Last Updated: 03/03/19 9:34am
Neil Warnock believes the battle for survival is a straight shoot-out between Cardiff and Southampton after a third straight Premier League loss to Wolves at Molineux.
Despite an encouraging opening, Diogo Jota and Raul Jimenez struck within two second-half minutes to leave the Bluebirds two points from safety in 18th after a 2-0 defeat.
Saints lost at Manchester United to stay 17th, while Crystal Palace and Brighton improved their survival hopes with crucial wins over Burnley and Huddersfield.
"Yeah [it is between Cardiff and Southampton], unless we get four or five wins which given the fixtures looks very difficult doesn't it? You've just got to keep positive," said Warnock.
"I can't fault the lads for effort it is just disappointing the way in which we are conceding."
Seventy-year-old Warnock was unhappy with the individual errors which led to Wolves' two goals which eventually proved enough for the three points.
Wolves glided through the South Wales outfit in a sublime passing move involving goalscorer Jota, Jimenez and Morgan Gibbs-White, before Sol Bamba's error led to the second.
And the former Leeds United and Queens Park Rangers boss says such mistakes have to be cut out if his side are to beat the drop.
"The crowd were getting nervous and within two minutes it is 2-0," he added. "It is like a record coming to speak to the cameras. They are just such elementary mistakes. They should not happen at this level. I can't really say any more.
"I think three of our lads will be disappointed if you look at the [first] goal. It might look great from their point of view but from my point of view, I thought three of our lads were disappointing.
"The second goal, Sol knows. That is what he used to be like. He has been magnificent. I can't criticise but he knows it is his mistake."
Bamba was replaced before the break with what looked like a serious ankle problem, which could restrict his involvement for the rest of Cardiff's remaining 10 fixtures - the next of which comes against West Ham.
The loss of the Ivory Coast international and referee Andre Marriner's decision not to show Ryan Bennett a second yellow card for a foul on Aron Gunnarsson proved key to the final result according to Warnock.
"Bennett should have been sent off for his second booking and I still don't understand," explained Warnock.
"He fouls Gunnarsson, the balls rolls away and Bennett gets the ball and he takes him off by the shin. Anywhere else that is a booking.
"I was disappointed at one or two free-kicks I thought we should have had in the first half. Whether he was in a bad position or not up with play I don't know why he isn't giving them.
"The fourth official, the linesman all saw them. And when you look at Bennett's reaction when he looks at the referee you know from his body language that he should have got booked.
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"Those are decisions we're getting every week now. We're not going to get any help from any referees, we've got to make our own luck."