CHAMPIONSHIP

AUTHOR: Star Sports Content

STAR FOOTBALL PREVIEW Fri: Cardiff v Reading

Cardiff City will be looking to build on their first win under new boss Sabri Lamouchi when they take on Reading on Friday night as the Bluebirds look to move closer to Championship survival.

It has been a tough and tricky season for the Bluebirds who are now onto their third manager of the campaign in Lamouchi after dismissing rookie bosses Steve Morison and Mark Hudson this season.

Lamouchi has prior experience of the Championship having spent a year in charge of Nottingham Forest and has now been tasked with stopping the rot at Cardiff City, restoring some of the good feeling around the club and, most importantly, keeping them in the division.

That victory against Birmingham City at St Andrews on Tuesday night, Lamouchi’s first since taking charge, was a morale-boosting win which has maintained a two-point gap between themselves and the bottom-three.

Former Sunderland and Crystal Palace striker Connor Wickham joined the club in recent days after spending the first half of the season with Forest Green Rovers. The 29-year-old came off the bench at Birmingham and will be hoping for a spot in the starting XI on Friday night.

Cardiff City v Reading
Championship
20:00 Sky Sports Main Event / Sky Sports Football / Sky Sports Ultra HDR

HEAD-TO-HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches)
AUG 2022 CHAMPIONSHIP Reading 2-1 Cardiff
APR 2022 CHAMPIONSHIP Reading 1-2 Cardiff
OCT 2021 CHAMPIONSHIP Cardiff 0-1 Reading
APR 2021 CHAMPIONSHIP Reading 1-1 Cardiff
SEP 2020 CHAMPIONSHIP Cardiff 1-2 Reading
FEB 2020 FA CUP Cardiff 3-3 Reading
JAN 2020 CHAMPIONSHIP Cardiff 1-1 Reading
JAN 2020 FA CUP Reading 1-1 Cardiff
AUG 2019 CHAMPIONSHIP Reading 3-0 Cardiff
MAY 2018 CHAMPIONSHIP Cardiff 0-0 Reading

Paul Ince has come under some pressure in recent weeks, but the Royals’ comeback win over Rotherham United managed to take some of that of his shoulders.

Reading went in at the break at the Madejski Stadium 1-0 down on Tuesday night, but goals from Andy Carroll and Tyrese Fornah managed to turn things around a secure a crucial three points for Ince’s side as they look to rubber stamp their spot in the Championship for next season.

Ex-Chelsea defender Baba Rahman will be unavailable for this one due to injury which leaves Ince with a slight dilemma in defnece ahead of this clash.

Neither of these sides are particularly potent in front of goal. In fact, Cardiff are the lowest scorers in the Championship with just 24 goals scored in 32 matches, so it’s unlikely to be a classic here nor is it surprising to see under 2.5 goals trading fairly short at 4/6 with starsports.bet.

But the Bluebirds, under new management of course, looked more organised earlier in the week and I fancy them to grind out a low-scoring victory here. Combining a home win and under 2.5 goals at 31/10 with starsports.bet as well as a correct score bet of 1-0 to Cardiff at 11/2 looks the play here.

JOE CITRONE


RECOMMENDED BETS
BACK Cardiff and under 2.5 goals 2pts at 31/10 (Latest Star Price ? CLICK TO BET NOW)
BACK Cardiff to win 1-0 1pt at 11/2 (Latest Star Price ? CLICK TO BET NOW)


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