I think it’s safe to say that today was as frustrating as they come. We absolutely dominated the game in South Wales from start to finish but a lack of quality in the final third cost us in the end.

In all honesty, we didn’t create many clear cut opportunities but still, the opportunities we did create, on another day or had they fallen to different players, we’d have been talking about 3 points now. Cardiff didn’t manage a shot on target until stoppage time in the second half, a shot which Declan Rudd was forced to tip over the bar.

As we said on twitter though, I think most would have taken a point before kick-off given our away record this season. Let’s just hope we can take some confidence from this into the game against Leeds United on Boxing Day.

Declan Rudd

Declan wasn’t really tested at all today but the one shot on target that he did have to deal with, he dealt with well enough by turning it over the bar for a corner. Other than that, there’s not really much to say about his performance outside of the usual.

Rating – 7

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Tom Clarke

Captain Clarke came back into the starting XI for the first time since the home game on August 21st against Stoke City. He did okay considering it was his first start for 4 months exactly.

He got up and down well enough, perhaps a little bit slow but that’s to be expected considering the circumstances.

Rating – 7

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Patrick Bauer

Big Pat was brilliant again today. I have said it before in these pieces of content but he brings such a calmness to the backline it’s unbelievable.

Plus there’s the added bonus that he wins most of his aerial duels, it’s certainly good to see him back out in the back 4 for us.

Rating – 7

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Paul Huntington

Hunts has come back into the back four after a fair amount of time out and he looks like he’s never been away. He’s been far from perfect, but the fact he has slotted almost seamlessly back in just shows what a top professional he is.

Rating – 7

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Andrew Hughes

Andrew Hughes was back in his hometown and undoubtedly had friends and family in the stands watching him put in yet another assured performance. Despite Rafferty filling in quite well in Hughesy’s absence, he’s starting to show just how much we have missed him.

Rating – 7

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Ben Pearson

Benjamin David Pearson. A 24-year old professional footballer from Oldham and very possibly the best central midfielder in the Championship. Yesterday was another game in which he showcased his significant talent and he ran the game from start to finish. Clear man of the match.

Rating – 9

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Paul Gallagher

For me today, Gally was largely ineffective. He struggled to get into the game but perhaps the early yellow card meant he couldn’t quite impose himself on the game as much as he may have liked.

Rating – 6

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Billy Bodin

Another player who struggled a bit yesterday for me. Offered little going forward aside from the shot that brought a good save out of Neil Etheridge in the Cardiff City goal. Overall though, he worked hard and had an okay game.

Rating – 6

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Alan Browne

Browney was full of energy and running yesterday and had some good moments in the game and showed some nice touches. He looks to have gotten back into the swing of things further up the pitch after a little run in and around his normal position.

However, he arguably had the best opportunity for us to fashion a clear cut chance in the game. He just had to get a ball off to one of his teammates either side of him in Sean Maguire or Tom Barkhuizen but ultimately he opted to get a tame shot off at Etheridge.

Rating – 7

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Sean Maguire

Now, Seani has come in for a lot of stick since the full-time whistle. Yes, he did miss a couple of chances and maybe he did look to get shoved off the ball to easy but he’s a good player and to be honest, aside from his decision making for one of the chances he had, I think he did well overall.

He doesn’t become a bad player overnight. At the start of the season, fans were singing his praises and now he’s ‘awful’ and all sorts of other shite that’s been posted online about him.

We’re 5th in the league going into Christmas, we have good players, we are a good side; back the boys!

Rating – 7

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Tom Barkhuizen

I thought Barky started out okay but after he seemed to get a knee in the back, he struggled a bit to get back into the swing of the game.

I don’t think the rest he has had of late will do him any harm, let’s just hope the knee in the back doesn’t lead to him missing any games in the coming weeks.

Rating – 6

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Substitutes

Neither Brad Potts, David Nugent or Jayden Stockley really had enough time on the pitch to influence the game in any way but all did okay. I don’t really like rating a player on less than 10 minutes on the pitch so I’ll leave it as they did okay when they all came on.

Finally, as there’s not going to be a new podcast from us until January 6th, why not listen to part 1 of From the Finney Meets… Graham Alexander? πŸ‘‡πŸ»