After three successive league defeats to Sheffield United, Bournemouth and Millwall, Stoke City were eliminated from the EFL Cup on Wednesday night, losing 2-1 at home to Premier League outfit Brentford.
The Bees took a two-goal lead into half time, thanks to strikes from Sergi Canos and Ivan Toney, before former Brentford midfielder Romaine Sawyers pulled one back for the Potters in the 57th minute. However, the hosts were unable to mount a comeback to reach their second successive quarter-final in the competition.
Michael O’Neill’s side now turn their attention back to the Championship, with Stoke one of seven teams to have accumulated 21 points from 14 games so far this season.
The Potters currently sit in ninth position, but are level on points with both Luton Town and Middlesbrough, who occupy the final two playoff places.
Stoke have failed to beat Cardiff in five of their last six meetings against them, including both encounters last season.
Despite their recent wobbles, O’Neill will be confident that his side can return to winning ways on Saturday as they seek to avoid four successive league defeats for the first time since the beginning of the 2019-20 campaign.
Cardiff City suffered their eighth successive league defeat when they were beaten 2-0 at home against Neil Warnock’s Middlesbrough last weekend, a result which brought an end to Mick McCarthy’s reign as manager.
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Strikes either side of half time from Andraz Sporar and Martin Payero condemned the Bluebirds to yet another defeat, which sees them remain just one place and two points above the relegation zone.
Former Chelsea and Derby County coach Jody Morris is the current favourite with the bookmakers to become Cardiff’s next manager, while Chris Wilder and Michael Flynn are also believed to be in the frame. As things stand, Steve Morison – another contender for the permanent vacancy – has been put in interim charge for this weekend’s game.
Spirits are at an all time low right now for Cardiff, however Morison will be looking to provide a much-needed boost at the bet365 Stadium, where the Welsh outfit won 2-1 last season