We can’t get carried away
Neil Warnock has moved to dampen down sky-high expectation as Cardiff City resume hostilities in the Championship with a trip to strugglers Birmingham City tonight.
Cardiff are at the summit of the Championship table ahead of their clash at St Andrew’s and know victory against Steve Cotterill’s side will see them remain firmly on top of the pile.
If that should happen, it will continue a superb start to the season which has seen the Bluebirds surprise pundits and fuel dreams of a return to the Premier League for fans.
But Warnock is urging supporters and his players to remain grounded and to simply enjoy the fact the Bluebirds are leading the way in England’s second tier.
“I said to our lot, let’s enjoy it and don’t worry about where we are while we’re there,” said Warnock.
“We’ve got quite good experience around the place and we’ve brought some fresh legs in as well so it’s a matter of just enjoying it. I don’t think there’s any expectation on us.
“I look at teams in the league, and even in the bottom half, there’s some big teams.
“I don’t think our fans expected anything other than trying to get into the play-offs so I won’t let anybody get carried away.
“Even our fans, I don’t mind them dreaming but we won’t get carried away.
“That’s why you don’t get too up when you’re winning and you can’t get too down when you lose a few. The glass is always half full for me.”
Warnock confirmed that summer signings Lee Camp and Callum Paterson won’t face Birmingham, but added that the pair are very close to being available for selection.
It means that long-term absentees Rhys Healey, Kadeem Harris and Jazz Richards are the only players currently on the treatment table.
Meanwhile, Swansea City boss Paul Clement looks set to be without summer signings Wilfried Bony and Renato Sanches for his side’s clash with Huddersfield Town at the Liberty Stadium.
Sanches linked up with Portugal’s senior side during the international break, although he did not feature for the Euro 2016 champions who secured their place at next year’s World Cup in Russia with a 2-0 win against Switzerland.
And Bony is rated at 50:50 to start for the Swans against the Terriers after experiencing discomfort while away on international duty with Ivory Coast.
“Renato Sanches is a big doubt, he picked up a minor thigh strain training with Portugal,” said Clement.
“It looks like it will rule him out on Saturday.
“We are monitoring Wilfried closely, he rejoined training today. We will have to assess him over the next couple of days and see how he is.”
More football: Pages 42-44