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Steve Morison relishing Liverpool test after Cardiff beat Preston in FA Cup

West Bromwich Albion v Cardiff City – Sky Bet Championship – The Hawthorns
(Image credit: Tim Goode)

Cardiff boss Steve Morison admitted drawing Liverpool in the FA Cup provoked a bigger celebration than their late winner against Preston.

Mark Harris’ extra-time goal secured a 2-1 victory over Preston and sent Cardiff into the hat for the fourth round.

And the Bluebirds were rewarded with a plum tie at Anfield during the first weekend of February.

“You don’t get much better than that,” said former Wales striker Morison, who will lock horns with Jurgen Klopp after just over two months in management.

“We watched the draw in the dressing room together.

“We knew we were (number) seven and we saw it even before she (Arsenal Women captain Leah Williamson) turned the ball around.

“We had a nice little celebration and it makes all the hard work the lads put in worthwhile.”

Cardiff’s third-round tie was played behind closed doors because of the Welsh Government’s Covid-19 restrictions.

The decision has hurt Welsh clubs financially, while English rivals across the border are able to play in front of crowds.

Morison said: “It was a strange atmosphere as there was none. Let’s just hope the powers that be help us out at some point.

“We didn’t know how to celebrate the goal. You win a game and you’re just standing there.

“There were better celebrations when we drew Liverpool out of the hat. I’m sure the draw will be of (financial) help.”

Isaak Davies scored Cardiff’s first-half opener less than two weeks after Morison described the Wales Under-21 forward as being more “a hindrance than a help” after a 3-0 defeat at Bournemouth.

Morison sent him on as a half-time substitute there only to replace him within 30 minutes.

He said: “I love the kid and he is a good player. He had some tough love from me at Bournemouth, but then we went through his performance and I’m really pleased for him.

“I said what I said about him to the press, but then I also said the same thing to him in the dressing room.

“Then we spent 45 minutes on Monday going through the video of the game and explaining to him what he did and didn’t do.”

Preston had equalised through Daniel Johnson’s 54th-minute penalty and might have had a second spot-kick at the death when Curtis Nelson appeared to handle.

Lilywhites boss Ryan Lowe said: “We played well in spells but we didn’t have the finishing edge and paid the price with four minutes to go.

“It should have finished 1-1 and gone into penalties.

“We had dealt with their long balls really well all game but we lacked concentration and got caught out.

“It would have been nice to have made the next round but we are not going to win the FA Cup, so it’s back to Championship football.”

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