Cardiff City's key remaining clashes of 2013

Malky Mackay remains in charge in the Welsh capital despite boardroom unrest but what remains on the pitch for them in the remainder of the year?

Two points off of the relegation zone and sitting in 14th position after a win against their fierce rivals Swansea constitutes a solid start to a first season in the Premier League for Cardiff and Malky Mackay

If the Welsh side are still out of the dropzone come 2014 then the fans and players will fancy their chances of survival in the top flight. But what stands in their way of doing that? Here are the key fixtures left this year for the Bluebirds.

Manchester United (H) 24th November - It doesn't get much bigger for a newly-promoted side than taking on the champions in front of their home fans and Mackay will be hoping the crowd can force a positive result against David Moyes' side.

Arsenal (H) 30th November - How do you follow the champions at home? How about a visit from the league leaders? The next two fixtures really are as tough as it gets for Mackay's side but after beating Manchester City already this year, they have nothing to fear.

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Stoke (A) 4th December - Any points picked up against those two teams will be seen as a bonus but to survive in the Premier League, they need to gain points against teams that will be around come the end of the season. Mark Hughes' Potters are one of those teams so a positive result is a must at the Britannia Stadium.

Crystal Palace (A) 7th December - If they could pick up a draw or even better a win against Stoke then they can follow that up with a big win over the currently managerless Eagles. Six points from the two games would give them a great chance of staying up.

Sunderland (H) 28th December - Mackay's men end the year by hosting another side in the relegation scrap when Gus Poyet's Black Cats travel to Wales. The former Brighton boss has picked up six points from his first four league games in charge so this won't be easy but a win would put them in a fantastic position for the remainder of the season.

image: © joncandy

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