U23s | Cardiff 0-1 Reds: Match Report (Barnsley perspective)
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Paul Harsley's U23s side secured an excellent away victory at Cardiff!
The Reds began the match on the front foot, with Dylan Mottley-Henry on the right and Ryan Williams on the left causing Cardiff's defensive line plenty of problems.
The pace and trickery on the wings combined with the calmness on the ball from the central midfield pairing of Kay and Bird meant that the Reds settled quickly. The first chance came from Williams controlling well on the wing and crossing into the box, which forward Jacob Brown stretched for, but couldn't quite get a toe on the end of it.
The Reds had to deal with some slight pressure from the home side from crosses as well. Julio Rodriguez and Nick Townsend both did well to defend the area following a corner from the hosts.
The breakthrough came on the half hour mark. Mottley-Henry showed his blistering pace to get in behind the Cardiff defence and was brought down.
Josh Kay stepped up to take the penalty, which was saved superbly by Luke O'Reilly in the Cardiff goal but Kay was ever alert to fire home the rebound and put his side ahead.
Very little chances came before the break, meaning the Reds took in a deserved half-time lead.
HALF-TIME: Cardiff 0-1 Barnsley (Kay 36')
The second half began with the Reds again on the front-foot. Ryan Williams continued his return to action with a lively start to the second half. The winger had caused problems in the first half, but looked determined to get as much of the ball as possible throughout the next period of the match.
Romal Palmer was the link-up man as he switched a ball out wide to Williams, who beat his man and whipped a dangerous low ball into the middle.
The home defence were then really struggling to cope with the onslaught, constantly clearing their lines as quickly as possible. This gave the Reds multiple chances to put balls into the box, whether that was from corners or throw-ins.
Cardiff had a couple of chances to level during the second half, but Nick Townsend continued to dominate his area, showing determination to keep a clean sheet.
With the match coming to a close and the Reds looking to a second to seal the win, they were awarded another penalty.
Josh Kay stepped up from the spot again, but was denied by the post this time. The full-time whistle was blown shortly after, sending Paul Harsley's side back to Barnsley with a deserved three points.
Full Time: Cardiff 0-1 Barnsley (Kay 36')
Reds XI: Townsend (GK), Kebbie, Hammond, Rodriguez, Proctor, Mottley-Henry, Bird, Kay, Brown, Palmer, Williams.
Subs: Danotche, Dolan, Rowe, Ottley.