Unbeaten Preston frustrate Cardiff in goalless stalemate
Preston had not tasted success against Cardiff since December 2017 and were hoping to end a run of six games without a win. They also came with a five-match unbeaten record to protect in this season’s Championship and ended up with a fifth goalless draw from six this campaign.
They managed to get to half-time with their record intact, making it eight hours and 15 minutes without conceding despite having to face a barrage of 13 shots from the home side. There were none in return.
Cardiff revealed their attacking intent from the off and after Jaden Philogene had been hauled down on the edge of the box, Joe Ralls floated in the free-kick.
It was cleared as far as Ryan Wintle, who hammered a volley that drifted just wide of the post. The home side tried to find a way to breakdown the towering Preston defensive line, but their final balls kept missing the mark.
Max Watters used his strength to get rid of Whiteman and clear a path to take a shot, but he missed the target midway through the first-half.
Preston were forced to replace Dan Johnson after 35 minutes, Emil Riis taking his spot up front, while Bluebirds boss Steve Morison gave new loan signing from Everton, Niels Nkounkou, his debut at the start off the second half in the problematic left back berth.
Callum O’Dowda had once again filled in following the injuries to Jamilu Collins and Joel Bagan, but Morison looked to use his new defender to plug a gap that Preston had sought to exploit.
Cardiff came out firing at the start of the second half and forced three successive corners and had two penalty appeals turned down. The first one came as Rubin Colwill’s shot hit a defender’s arm and then Perry Ng claimed he had been brought down from the third corner.
Preston continued to ride their luck and Woodman was relieved to see Ralls shot hit the inside of his right-hand post and ricochet away from goal after the home skipper had been set upon the ‘D’ by some great build up play from Colwill and Romain Sawyers in the 52nd minute.
Neither side created any clear-cut chances and the closest Preston came to scoring was in the 86th minute when home defender Cedric Kipre headed against his own post as he attempted a clearance. Luckily for him Allsop’s body diverted the ball away from goal.
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