It may be difficult to take the positives from conceding six goals in a home game when you sit 19th in the Premier League and only have seven games to save your season. But Cardiff showed promise on Saturday as they exploited Liverpool’s defensive fragility to score three times in their 6-3 defeat.
Liverpool are title contenders, no doubt about it. Although it’s hard to comprehend conceding six to any team in the Premier League, the Reds have adopted the ‘we’ll score more than you’ approach to counterbalance their vulnerable back four. They are deadly.
Cardiff would have beaten any team outside of the top four on Saturday. They started the game ironically with plenty of ‘fire and passion’ as their re-branded, unwelcome club crest states. Smart finishes from Jordon Mutch and Fraizer Campbell left Cardiff more than in the game going in to half-time.
The problem is, they just cannot defend.
Liverpool admittedly showed good invention for a few of their goals, but the defence was a shambles. When Martin Skrtel makes a striker's run across the penalty area to nip in a wide cross, you know there are issues.
The Bluebirds also found themselves slightly unlucky when the goal to put Liverpool in front for the first time came from a corner when City only had nine men on the pitch.
Luckily for Cardiff, they won’t be facing the most deadly Premier League strike force again this season. Games against West Brom, Sunderland, Crystal Palace and Stoke all sit on the horizon. If City play with the same intensity and creativity up top, they are more than capable of winning.
Fraizer Campbell must start those games. His energy and hunger to get goals is far greater than that of Kenwyne Jones. His celebration on Saturday spoke volumes. He is the most passionate and capable of Cardiff’s strike force to help pull them out of their current mess.
In short, if Cardiff match the performance against Liverpool and somehow restrict their defensive frailties, they are still in with a chance. But a loss to West Brom next Saturday will all but seal Championship football for next season.
Can Cardiff pull themselves out of the Premier League relegation zone and survive?