Cardiff overcome injury-hit Owls
Johnson and Chopra grab second-half goals for Bluebirds
Last Updated: December 20, 2008 5:46pm
Johnson: Deflected opener
Cardiff City maintained their play-off aspirations with a comfortable 2-0 home win over a depleted Sheffield Wednesday side.
Roger Johnson made the breakthrough for Cardiff four minutes after half-time and the hosts never looked back from that point.
On-loan striker Michael Chopra made sure of the points from the penalty spot on 65 minutes after Joe Ledley had been fouled by Sean McAllister.
Bluebirds manager Dave Jones was afforded the luxury of naming the same starting XI that secured an impressive 2-1 win at Ipswich last weekend.
Opposite number Brian Laws, however, could only name 15 players in his matchday squad, which included six academy graduates and had an average age of just 22.
Nathan Modest was handed his debut while Luke Boden also made his first start for the club.
In-form Cardiff striker Jay Bothroyd had the first real chance of the game after seven minutes, turning and volleying over from 12 yards when he really should have made keeper Lee Grant work.
Bothroyd was looking lively early on and headed wide from close range shortly after, but Wednesday survived the home side's early pressure and Boden was heavily involved in most moves going forward.
But it was the Bluebirds who upped the tempo once more as the half wore on, without really testing Grant in the Wednesday goal.
The away side struggled to really enjoy any form of possession as the hosts dominated, leaving home keeper Peter Enckelman as a mere spectator.
Owls forward Marcus Tudgay cleared Wayne Routledge's corner away from danger as the half drew to a low-key conclusion.
But, for all the shortage of goalmouth action in the first half and lack of conviction from Cardiff, the hosts took the lead four minutes after the restart.
Bothroyd headed the ball down to defender Johnson on the edge of the area and he drilled a shot goalwards that took a massive deflection off McAllister and left Grant stranded.
Routledge forced Grant to parry his effort to safety shortly after as Cardiff looked for a quick second, Bothroyd again making the Wednesday keeper work on the hour mark.
Cardiff continued to dominate proceedings, just as they had in the first half, and it was no real surprise when they went 2-0 up from the penalty spot.
McAllister was again the villain, bringing down Ledley in the area to leave Chopra with the easy task of firing home his fourth league goal of the season.
Grant tipped Ledley's effort around a post shortly after to ensure Wednesday left Ninian Park on the end of a respectable defeat considering their injury problems.
Sky Bet Championship
Sat 20th Dec
Birmingham1 - 3Reading
Derby1 - 0Watford
Doncaster0 - 1Wolves
Cardiff2 - 0Sheff Wed
Norwich1 - 0Charlton
Southampton0 - 2N Forest
Coventry2 - 2Ipswich
Barnsley2 - 0Plymouth
Blackpool1 - 1Swansea
Bristol C1 - 2Burnley
QPR3 - 2Preston
Sheff Utd2 - 2C Palace
Sky Bet Championship
|2||Queens Park Rangers||18||38|
|11||Brighton and Hove Albion||18||25|