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West Ham United v Cardiff City

Filed: Monday, 23rd September 2013
By: Preview Percy

Preview Percy has written another preview about Cardiff City. It's just as bad as the previous one. Let's hope and pray we don't get them in the FA Cup as well....

Next up we play host to Cardiff City in the 3rd round of the League Cup. Kick off on Tuesday night is 7.45pm and I believe that the usual requirement for Cardiff supporters to pick up their tickets from a disused, uncharted and unlit North Sea oil rig by 3am has been dispensed with. As ever in this competition, extra time and penalties are available to settle matters on the night should they be required. Don't wait up luv.

League form in their first visit to the to flight for a jolly long time has been patchy. They looked a bit overawed on the opening day as we coasted to a relatively easy 2-0 victory. This was followed up by an unexpected 3-2 win over Man City at the City of Cardiff stadium, a match in which the Citizens gave a whole new meaning to the word “complacent”. Draws at home to Everton (0-0) and away to Hull (1-1) gave them a three match unbeaten run which came to an end at the weekend with a stoppage time defeat to Spurs. All of which has left them in one place behind us, level on points and two goals worse off on the goal difference front. In the previous round of this particular competition they went up to Accrington and won 2-0.

Like us they can claim to have suffered at the hands of the referee this weekend, Loris's handball outside the box was close enough for Clattenburg to get the benefit of the doubt in that case. Spurs went on to have some silly number of efforts on goal before finally winning in stoppage time.

On decent form in the Spurs match was 'keeper David Marshall. Marshall has been first choice in the league so far this season, though he did miss out on a trip to Hull with a hip injury. Let's face it which one of us wouldn't feign some sort of injury to avoid a trip to Humberside? In the modern style Joe Lewis was preferred to Marshall for the League Cup trip so we should probably expect that again.

It is thought that the match may see a first start for Peter Odemwinge. He's been about this lad hasn't he. The place where he was born – Tashkent. – used to be part of the USSR. By the time he was 10 it was part of Uzbekistan. His early career was spent in the youth systems of KAMAZ and CSKA but he went to Nigeria (his father's birthplace) to play for his first grown-up club, the wonderfully named Bendel Insurance. From there he went to Belgium, winning the Belgian Cup with La Louviere. His next trip was from Belgium (where they speak French even though they don't have to) to France (where they do), spending three years or so at Lille. Next stop was a return to the former USSR where Lokomotiv Moscow were his employers for a few years. The knobhead racist element of the Moscow support celebrated his departure for West Brom with banners saying “Thanks West Brom”.

Even though his passport stamps read USSR, Nigeria, Belgium, France, Russia and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, it is a rather more prosaic journey for which he became noted, journeying down the M6 where he was under the mistaken impression that he had a deal to join QPR. I can't imagine for the life of me how he might have come about that impression. After all, it's not as if their manager would have had any illegal contact with the player or his agents, is it? The journey saw him stuck in the car park with everyone at QPR hiding behind the curtains pretending not to be in, prompting chants of “he went to QPR, they left him in his car” and “what a waste of petrol” from opposition fans at the end of last season. He eventually left the Hawthorns on deadline day for Cardiff and is presumably disappointed that he didn't get another stamp in his passport, having been persuaded by Cardiff that Wales was a proper country, rather than just somewhere England keeps the mountains that there wasn't room for in Scotland.

Record signing (for a few days anyway) Andreas Cornelius is likely to miss out. He had ankle issues during pre-season and had the bad fortune to exacerbate his injury early on in the Accrington match in the last round. This may mean a start for ex-Hammer Nicky Maynard. Maynard was on the bench against Spurs and remained unused. So his will be one of the fresher pairs of legs available to Malky Mackay, given the mere 48 hours or so between the end of Sunday's match and the start of this one.

One player I simply have to mention, irrespective of whether or not Mackay chooses to start him is French defender Kevin Theophile-Catherine who is currently leading the Avram Grant Olympic Rest Home for the Bewildered competition for “Most Splendidly-Named Opponent”. Theophile-Catherine (brilliant isn't it) came in just before the deadline from Rennes for a fee of a shade over £2m, most of which will be recouped as soon as one or two supporters decide to stick his name on the back of their shirts.

Us? Well here at the Avram Grant Rest Olympic Rest Home or the Bewildered were frankly gobsmacked at the refereeing at the weekend. Lee Mason gave the impression that he belonged in one of the padded rooms they have here for the more “difficult” residents. Ron Vibbentropp, our German resident, reckons that back in his home country a panel reviews every refereeing decision and those referees who fail to consistently score a high average find themselves going down the leagues. It's all open and clear to all, unlike our own PGMOL, who are responsible for their own marking and hide the results from everyone, thus ensuring that the likes of Mason don't get what they deserve. In Mason's case that would be a long stay in Guantnamo Bay being forced to listen to Bon Jovi 24 hours a day.

In truth, Lukaku's introduction was the catalyst for Everton's revival but I reckon we would have deserved the point stolen from us by Mason's dishonesty on the strength of the first half performance.. Thankfully the moronic decision to send off Noble wasn't more costly. He'll only miss this game – which he would probably have been rested for anyway.

We may see a start for Petric as he attempts to gin a bit of match fitness. It was his hard work that led to the penalty and he has to be a better bet than Maiga who appears to veer between interested and not bothered at the drop of a hat.

Squad rotation may see us start with a similar side to that which saw off Cheltenham, especially when you consider the injury list which contains the likes of Cole, Downing, Demel, Downing and Carroll. So maybe it's time for another run out for Leo Chambers perhaps? I'd certainly expect to see Adrian to be given a run out – with possibly Henderson sitting on the racing car in the squad last time seats to give Jaaskalainen a night off.

Other youngsters who were in the squad for the last round included Seb Lletget – for whom the editors have been saving the headline “Lletget's ready to rumble” for several years now - and Elliot Lee for whom they'll have to be more creative, so expect a similar bench this time round.

Prediction? Well as ever with this competition much will depend on how strong a team the respective managers elect to put out. I'd fancy us to win comfortably if the respective first teams were fielded. However, the permutations are pretty flexibe on both sides – though with the relatively short time since their match against Spurs you'd have though that there'd be a few rested. I'll still plump for a win though and I'll be putting the AGORHFTB Lee Mason Straitjacket Fund (£2.50) on us to win 2-1 though don't be too surprised if it all goes to extra time.

Enjoy the game!

When Last We Met At The Boleyn – Won 2-0 August 2013. Joe Cole in the first half and Kevin Nolan in the second sealed the points. Blimey if you can't remember that maybe you should be here at the rest home instead of me! I mean I only mentioned it up there near the top of the page. Do try to pay attention.

Referee: Roger East – last seen in our 6-0 defeat of Brighton the season before last, when he booked Carlton Cole (who is famous) for complaining, rather than the defender who was kicking him (who wasn't famous).

Danger Man: Nicky Maynard – difficult to predict a danger man when you have little idea what side the opponents will put out. The “law of the ex” will apply assuming Maynard gets the nod.

Daft Welsh Fact Of The Week: The current incarnation of Dr Who is largely filmed in the Welsh capital. Bit of an obvious location really when you think about it – all that strange unearthly barren scenery and a strange almost but not quite human-like population, whose origins are betrayed by the strange alien tongue that they insist on writing half the road signs in. I bet they think it's a documentary down there.

Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, nor should be attributed to, KUMB.com.

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