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Cardiff put four past Luton to ease pressure on Neil Harris

Neil Harris File Photo
(Image credit: David Davies)

Cardiff eased the pressure on manager Neil Harris with a dominant 4-0 victory over Luton.

Early goals from captain Sean Morrison and young striker Mark Harris put Cardiff on course for just their second win in nine matches, before Kieffer Moore and Sheyi Ojo sealed victory with second-half strikes.

The crucial triumph saw Cardiff move up to 14th in the Championship and to within six points of the play-off places, while Luton remained in 12th.

Mark Harris started only his second league game for Cardiff more than three years after his first as under pressure manager Neil Harris searched for an answer to remedy his side’s woeful form.

Midfielder Marlon Pack was dropped after his role in the goal that cost Cardiff at Coventry and replaced by Will Vaulks, while Ojo was preferred to Junior Hoilett on the right wing of a 4-4-2 formation.

Nathan Jones made a single alteration to the side that drew their third consecutive match at Birmingham last time out. Ryan Tunnicliffe was brought back into a midfield diamond in place of Elliot Lee, who had to settle for a place on the bench.

Harris had admitted this could be his final game in charge if he failed to deliver a positive result, and his players responded by easing the pressure with two early goals.

Bluebirds captain Morrison led from the front to give his side a nerve-settling opener after five minutes.

The defender lost his marker Matty Pearson at a corner and peeled around to the back post to volley Harry Wilson’s looping corner past Simon Sluga and into the back of the net.

Four minutes later, front-man Mark Harris repaid his manager’s faith by doubling the Welsh side’s lead.

Liverpool loanee Ojo carried the ball from inside his own half down the left flank before he found Harris with an accurate cross. The 21-year-old got the ball out from under his feet with his first touch and fired low into the bottom corner with his second to put Cardiff in total control.

Despite Luton boss Nathan Jones bringing on James Bree and Sam Nombe before half-time, it was Cardiff who pressed on after the restart. Joe Ralls went close with the first chance of the second period when he raced on to Morrison’s flick on and headed just wide.

But Cardiff utilised their physical edge to score a third after 59 minutes. Wilson whipped in another dangerous corner towards 6ft 5in striker Moore, who towered over Bree to head in his fifth goal of the season.

And the rout was completed with eight minutes left by Ojo, who collected Rhys Norrington-Davies’ clearance from a corner and rifled a left-footed shot across goal and past Sluga.