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Preview: Huddersfield Town vs. Cardiff City - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday's Championship clash between Huddersfield Town and Cardiff City, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Cardiff City square off against Huddersfield Town on Friday evening looking to extend their 10-match unbeaten streak under recently-appointed boss Mick McCarthy.

While the Bluebirds are now in contention for the Championship playoffs, Huddersfield are looking to stay clear of the relegation zone after claiming just one win since the turn of the year.


Match preview

Cardiff City manager Mick McCarthy pictured on February 16, 2021© Reuters

When Cardiff made the decision to replace Neil Harris with McCarthy, few supporters would have been satisfied with the appointment of a man who failed to win over fans at Ipswich Town.

As it stands, the Bluebirds hierarchy looked to have pulled off a masterstroke, with the former Republic of Ireland boss having guided the club to 24 points from a possible 30.

Such has been Cardiff's transformation that any draw under McCarthy is now regarded as a disappointment, highlighting the unforeseen change of mood at the Welsh outfit.

With 12 matches still remaining and some of their rivals possessing games in hand, Cardiff should still be regarded as outsiders when it comes to claiming a playoff place.

Nevertheless, Tuesday night's 4-0 win over Derby County was emphatic, and McCarthy will see no reason why his players cannot replicate that performance against an out-of-sorts Huddersfield.

Huddersfield Town manager Carlos Corberan reacts on January 16, 2021© Reuters

Having avoided defeat against relegation rivals Birmingham City, Carlos Corberan will be content with the Terriers adding another point to their tally.

However, the 1-1 draw took Huddersfield's tally for 2021 to six points from 12 matches, their only victory coming versus promotion chasers Swansea City.

The Yorkshire side are just a couple of wins away from re-entering the mix for the mid-table spots, positions now deemed desirable after the inconsistency since the turn of the year.

With Huddersfield still possessing the eighth-best home record in the division, Corberan and his players may relish the tag of underdogs as they come up against the form team in the division.

Huddersfield Town Championship form: LLWLLD

Cardiff City Championship form: WWWWDW


Team News

Cardiff City's Harry Wilson celebrates scoring against Bournemouth in the Championship on October 21, 2020© Reuters

Providing that he sticks with a back four, Corberan could name the same Huddersfield side which started the fixture against Blues.

Yaya Sanogo is unlikely to be ready to make his first start, while Richard Stearman should keep his spot ahead of Richard Keogh.

Defensive duo Christopher Schindler and Harry Toffolo remain on the sidelines through injury.

Cardiff will be forced into at least one change with Joe Bennett sustaining a knee injury against Derby in midweek.

Joel Bagan should come into the team at left wing-back, with Harry Wilson also in contention to start after remaining as an unused substitute versus the Rams.

Huddersfield Town possible starting lineup:
Schofield; Edmonds-Green, Stearman, Sarr, Pipa; Bacuna, Vallejo, O'Brien; Holmes, Campbell, Mbenza

Cardiff City possible starting lineup:
Phillips; Morrison, Flint, Nelson; Ng, Vaulks, Pack, Bagan; Ojo, Bacuna; Moore


SM words green background

We say: Huddersfield Town 0-2 Cardiff City

Huddersfield have shown on plenty of occasions this season that they are capable of defeating any level of opposition at the John Smith's Stadium. However, we expect Cardiff to make relatively light work of their hosts, easing to a comfortable win with a clean sheet.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Away:data


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Cardiff City manager Mick McCarthy pictured on February 16, 2021
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
2Watford422410859283182
3Swansea CitySwansea4222101052331976
4Brentford412014771403174
5Bournemouth4221111069412874
6Barnsley42218135446871
7Reading4219101357461167
8Cardiff CityCardiff4216121458461260
9Millwall421417114140159
10Queens Park RangersQPR421611155051-159
11Middlesbrough42169174947257
12Stoke CityStoke421414144546-156
13Luton TownLuton41168173646-1056
14Bristol City42156214156-1551
15Blackburn RoversBlackburn421311185448650
16Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest421213173441-749
17Preston North EndPreston42147214155-1449
18Coventry CityCoventry421212183956-1748
19Birmingham CityBirmingham421212183250-1848
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield421211194562-1747
21Derby CountyDerby421110213148-1743
22Rotherham UnitedRotherham40116234154-1339
23Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds42119223555-2036
24Wycombe WanderersWycombe42810243266-3434

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