Cardiff City v Brighton & Hove Albion

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A brief look at tonight’s (Wednesday 17th August 2011) N-Power Championship fixture between Malky Mackay’s Bluebirds and Gus Poyet’s newly promoted Seagulls.

Both teams go into the fixture with great starts to the campaign with the visitors to the Cardiff City Stadium, Brighton recording two home wins and one away win so far.

Doncaster Rovers were the first team to visit the Seagulls brand new 22,374 Amex Stadium, which cost a staggering £105 million to build. Gus Poyet’s men started the way they left off last season but some sloppy defending let Doncaster’s Billy Sharp take the lead. Gus Poyet reacted by making some substitutions, Will Buckley who they signed from Watford in the summer for £1.2 million was one of them and he proved to be worth what they paid for him, scoring two late goals to give Brighton their first win.

Brighton then entertained league two outfit Gillingham at The Amex and duly came out on top winning 1-0. A few days later they faced a tough trip to local rivals Portsmouth who gave them a great game but Gus Poyet’s came out 1-0 winners again after Liam Lawrence missed a penalty in the 90th minute.

Cardiff opened their campaign with a totally different squad after twelve players departed the club. Amongst them were Michael Chopra who was sold to Ipswich for £1.7 million in the summer, the top goal scorer of Cardiff’s last campaign, Jay Bothroyd, who was released by the club and has now joined Premier League new boys QPR and the loanee Craig Bellamy who has returned to Manchester City but is hoping for a swift return.

Malky Mackay’s first test was an away trip to the league favourites West Ham United who were put in their place by Cardiff after new signing Kenny Miller grabbed the decisive goal in the 90th minute. Malky also took his men to Oxford United for a Carling Cup fixture with new boy Craig Conway giving City an early lead, but Oxford equalised and took the game to extra time. The better fitness of Malky’s Bluebirds shone through however as they went on to win 3-1 with goals from sub Peter Whittingham and Nat Jarvis.

On Sunday Malky had his first home game of the new campaign and was warmly welcomed by the 22,000 Cardiff fans. They were given their first home win after Cardiff came out 3-1 winners over local rivals Bristol City with goals from Mark Hudson, Craig Conway and a player who is well known by all Cardiff fans and was given a great reception when he scored his first goal after returning on a free transfer from Nottingham Forest , Robert Earnshaw. Bristol did give something for their 750 fans to cheer about when Nicky Maynard finished well but it was too late.

Brighton will be without Will Buckley for this fixture while Cardiff are missing midfielder Aron Gunnarsson, but will be well aware that a win would put them top of the league!

Match Report: Seagulls Snatch Win

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IMAGE: 2nd Half Kick Off by joncandy

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