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Feb 2, 2022 at 7.45pm UK
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Preview: Barnsley vs. Cardiff City - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Barnsley vs. Cardiff City - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Wednesday's Championship clash between Barnsley and Cardiff City, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Cardiff City square off against Barnsley on Wednesday evening with an opportunity to move 15 points clear of their bottom-of-the-table hosts.

While the Bluebirds currently occupy 20th position in the Championship standings, the Tykes are eight points adrift of safety.

Match preview

Last week, there were suggestions that Steve Morison may be removed from his position as interim boss at Cardiff despite having only recently taken on the role.

However, Sunday's 2-1 victory over promotion-chasing Nottingham Forest should go some way to easing any pressure, the Bluebirds now sitting six points clear of the drop zone.

Things may change should Cardiff succumb to rivals Barnsley later this week, but Morison will feel that he deserves an opportunity to get the most out of the array of new arrivals in South Wales.

Morison got an instant contribution out of Jordan Hugill, who netted within six minutes of his debut, while Alfie Doughty made a solid impression at left wing-back.

In the long term, Morison will have to improve on a return of 15 points from 13 league matches, but there are signs that Cardiff can do enough to keep themselves away from the relegation zone going forward.

As far as Barnsley are concerned, Poya Asbaghi will be fearful of his club being cut adrift in the relegation zone unless they can get a win on the board as soon as possible.

Despite the positives being able to be taken from only losing 1-0 to Bournemouth at the weekend, the Yorkshire outfit remain without a league victory since the start of November.

Fortunately for Barnsley, Reading have not been able to pull away in 21st spot, keeping their hopes of an unlikely survival alive despite just two wins coming from 27 games.

Nevertheless, there will be an acceptance that 20th position will realistically be beyond them if they succumb to a sixth defeat in seven outings on Wednesday, leaving Asbaghi to contemplate whether this fixture is a must-win or must-not-lose.

Barnsley Championship form:
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L

Barnsley form (all competitions):
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • L

Cardiff City Championship form:
  • D
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • W

Cardiff City form (all competitions):
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • W

Team News

On the back of the performance against Forest, Morison will give consideration to selecting the same Cardiff XI from that match.

However, Isaak Davies is in contention to replace Max Watters after scoring as a substitute, while Will Vaulks could provide fresh legs in midfield.

The likes of Aden Flint and Marlon Pack are expected to remain among the replacements.

After pushing Bournemouth at the weekend, Asbaghi is unlikely to make many alterations to his Barnsley starting lineup.

At a time when the Tykes have a mounting injury list, midfielder Josh Benson is seemingly at the front of the queue when it comes to potential recalls.

Barnsley possible starting lineup:
Collins; Andersen, Helik, Moon; Williams, Palmer, Wolfe, Styles, Vita; Iseka, Cole

Cardiff City possible starting lineup:
Smithies; Ng, Morrison, McGuinness; Drameh, Doyle, Ralls, Wintle, Doughty; Davies, Hugill

We say: Barnsley 0-1 Cardiff City

Barnsley simply cannot afford to lose a match of this profile, and Asbaghi will be confident that his side can take advantage of tired legs in the Cardiff camp. Nevertheless, the visitors are on a high, and we feel that they will be able to grind out a 1-0 win.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals 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.Over 1.5:data

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