Late Cedric Kipre winner boosts Cardiff’s Championship survival bid
Cardiff virtually secured their Championship status with a 2-1 win at fellow strugglers Rotherham.
Cedric Kipre struck the decisive goal two minutes from time to ensure the Welsh side leapfrogged The Millers and move six points clear of the bottom relegation spot with just two games left to play.
It looked as though the visitors’ penalty woes were continuing to cost them when Sory Kaba missed for a second successive match and upped their tally of missed spot kicks to five for the season.
But Kipre bailed out the striker late on with a goal which keeps Rotherham in trouble and only three points above 22nd placed Reading.
The initial meeting between the two sided was abandoned minutes into the second half due to a waterlogged pitch with Cardiff leading 1-0.
Rotherham almost got off to the perfect start when Wes Harding’s lofted ball was won fiercely by Jordan Hugill only for it to rebound back off the woodwork and away to safety.
Cardiff threatened when skipper Joe Ralls played in Mahlon Romeo in plenty of space and his shot had to be pushed out by Viktor Johansson.
They converted their next chance after 11 minutes with Kion Etete slipping in behind Harding and heading in Perry Ng’s cross clinically.
Bluebirds’ goalkeeper Jak Alnick was forced into his first save by a long-range effort from Conor Coventry.
Kaba then had a great chance to double the visitors’ advantage after capitalising on a Cameron Humphreys’ misjudgement but his powerful effort was kept out by Johansson.
Rotherham levelled after 37 minutes and it was again Harding providing the perfect cross which Chiedozie Ogbene managed to power in at the back post.
Cardiff were handed a huge chance to go back in front in added on time after Coventry fouled Jaden Philogene but Kaba saw his penalty crash against the crossbar.
A tense second half ensued but it was Cardiff who looked the more likely to create a big chance.
When one materialised it was to the away side’s dangerman Philogene who was slipped in down the left, he cut back inside menacingly, but his shot was deflected out of play.
The game was settled after 88 minutes when Kipre kept his composure in the box to lash home the winner following a goalmouth scramble.
The only real panic the visitors endured during added on time was when substitute Domingos Quina took aim from distance but his shot was easily gathered by Alnwick.