Feb 1, 2014, 9:42 AM EDT
Can the Premier League’s bottom side manage to collect all three points against Norwich City today? Cardiff are currently on 18 points, and even a win might not lift them to safety – but it just might provide hope that the Bluebirds will survive (watch live online on NBC Sports Live Extra at 10 a.m. ET).
If you’re looking for a high scoring match, this one probably won’t be it. When the two sides met in October at Carrow Road, they each walked away with a point after playing out a goalless draw. And despite certain clubs’ tendency to put four or more past Norwich, the Bluebirds, with just 17 goals – the lowest scored in the league – aren’t going to be the side that puts in seven.
No, this one is much more likely to be a match of careful calculation. The Canaries might be in 12th, but they’re still just five points from safety, and pulling them up point by point might be the way that Chris Hughton will be able to keep hold of his job.
Several changes for both sides this afternoon in Cardiff. The hosts insert new signings Fabio and Kenwyne Jones straight into the starting lineup, while Wilfried Zaha, on loan from Manchester United, takes his place on the bench.
Hughton makes several changes to the side that held Newcastle to a goalless draw in midweek. Alexander Tettey, Jonas Gutierrez and Johan Elmander are included in the starting lineup, while Leroy Fer, Anthony Pilkington and Ricky van Wolfswinkel all drop to the bench.
Cardiff City: Marshall; Fabio, Caulker, Turner, John; Whittingham, Medel, Mutch, Noone; Bellamy, Jones
Subs: Lewis; Campbell, Eikrem, Gunnarsson, Theophile-Catherine, Daehli, Zaha
Norwich City: Ruddy; Martin, R Bennett, Bassong, Olsson; Snodgrass, Tettey, Johnson, Gutierrez; Elmander, Hooper.
Subs: Bunn, Whittaker, van Wolfswinkel, Fer, Pilkington, Becchio, Redmond.
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