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Mick McCarthy glad of reprieve as transfer near miss threatens to haunt Cardiff

Huddersfield Town v Cardiff City – Sky Bet Championship – John Smith’s Stadium
(Image credit: Tim Goode)

Cardiff manager Mick McCarthy admitted he was delighted to see Yaya Sanogo miss a penalty against his team after missing out on signing the former Arsenal forward.

Sanogo’s spot-kick blunder meant McCarthy extended the unbeaten start to his managerial reign at Cardiff to an 11th game during a 0-0 draw at Huddersfield.

The former Republic of Ireland boss also reasoned that his team’s below-standard performance on a night when they could have climbed into the Championship’s play-off positions was probably a consequence of their hectic programme of fixtures.

He said: “I’m so glad Sanogo missed the penalty because we were in discussions with him to come to us. We couldn’t do it because of Brexit and the Welsh FA rules, but he’s managed to come to an English club and Huddersfield have signed him.

“When he lined up to take the penalty I thought it would be Sod’s Law that he would score because that’s what usually happens in football, so I was delighted when it went wide.

“It was a really tough game. We didn’t particularly play well, even though we were really solid, but we probably got done by our busy schedule in terms of our energy levels.

“We had to scrap it out and it was a case of if you can’t win it, don’t get beat. That’s what we did and I don’t think a point is ever a bad result at Huddersfield.”

Huddersfield manager Carlos Corberan admitted the penalty miss was the game’s key moment but was pleased with the manner in which his side attacked and dealt with Cardiff’s dead-ball threat.

He said: “The team competed really well and I thought we dominated the game for long periods and built momentum through the match. We had more of the ball in front of their defenders but didn’t get through their back line many times in the first half.

“Our transition from defence to attack was better in the second half and the penalty was the most clear chance we had but unfortunately we did not score from it.

“The idea was always for Sanogo to take the penalty and he was feeling confident. The second option was (Juninho) Bacuna, but we went with the first option.

“Unfortunately, not converting the penalty had a big impact on the result of the game, but the best thing was that we continued going forward and defended well after the penalty.

“The point was not good enough for our performance but I have to praise the players for the way they played. We did exactly what we need to do and competed at the level we need to compete at.

“We had more clear-cut chances than them and their only chances were from set-pieces. We know they are near the top in the division for set-pieces, but we defended them well.”