Stoke City 1-2 Cardiff City: Bluebirds come from behind to win in the Potteries
Sam Vokes missed a crucial penalty which could have doubled the home sides lead on the hour mark. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Sean Morrison had an eventful evening at the bet365 Stadium as the Cardiff City captain scored an own goal, gave away a penalty and scored the winning goal as the Bluebirds came from behind to beat Stoke City.

The Potters took a first half lead and missed the chance to double that advantage on the hour mark when Sam Vokes missed a penalty.

Cardiff seized the initiative afterwards and scored two goals in ten minutes to turn the game on its head.

Neil Harris's side held on for a second successive away victory to climb within two points of the SkyBet Championship play-offs.

Stoke suffered another two injuries to add to the defeat, as key forward Tyrese Campbell joined the ever growing injury list in the Potteries.

Story of the game

Both sides came into the game in a similar run of form and having won their previous games 1-0, it was no surprise then that the opening period was tight and without much goalmouth action.

The first real chance of note in the game came just before the ten-minute mark, it was the home side who created it.

Tyrese Campbell drove at the Cardiff defence from deep, some skillful footwork opened up a shooting opportunity on his left foot, the goal opened up, but his whipped effort dragged wide of the left post.

The 20-year-old looked frustrated with himself in the aftermath, although he would be even more frustrated five minutes later as he saw strong penalty appeals waved away.

Jacob Brown’s low cut back cross sought out Campbell in the penalty area, the striker almost made contact but was blocked off cynically by both Cardiff centre halves, referee Tony Harrington however was unmoved by the protests.

The breakthrough came in the 25th minute after Will Vaulks was cautioned for a foul near the halfway line.

A short free kick found Campbell whose initial cross was blocked, his second cross was low and dangerous into the penalty area. Bluebirds skipper Sean Morrison got in the way and clumsily bundled the ball into his own net to give the Potters the lead.

It was Campbell’s seventh assist of the campaign as Stoke’s young talisman continued his electric start to the Championship season.

Cardiff had their first chance of the half shortly before its conclusion, when Sheyi Ojo’s deep cross was met by Harry Wilson at the far post.

His scuffed effort clipped the boots of James McClean and bounced awkwardly to the hands of a grateful Joe Bursik.

Stoke almost doubled their lead minutes into the second half from a set-piece, after good work by McClean on the Stoke left.

Josh Tymon’s out swinging corner was met by a climbing James Chester around the Cardiff six-yard box, his towering header cannoned off the crossbar and bounced over to the relief of a beaten Alex Smithies.

Stoke suffered a crushing blow ten minutes after the restart when star man Campbell had to be withdrawn with an injury.

Campbell had worried the Cardiff defence constantly and his substitution would prove to be a crucial moment in the match.

The Potters had a golden opportunity for a second shortly before the hour mark from the penalty spot. Nick Powell worked his way in to the area only to be charged over by Morrison.

Although not the strongest challenge, it was a messy tackle by the Cardiff captain and referee Harrington had no hesitation in pointing to the stop.

Sam Vokes replaced Campbell minutes before and stepped up to take the spot kick, however the former Welsh international’s penalty was poor, lacking in pace, and at a good height for Smithies to save.

Vokes, who lost his place in the Stoke side to summer singing Steven Fletcher, is still without a goal this campaign. The effort from the penalty spot was one of a player out of form and lacking in confidence.

The saved penalty seemed to galvanise the Bluebirds and seven minutes later the visitors took full advantage and grabbed the equaliser, again from a set piece.

Joe Ralls whipped in a poor corner that was easily cleared at the near post, however Ralls picked up the loose ball and tried again, this time delivering an excellent deep cross to the far post.

Substitute Robert-Nesta Glatzel found himself completely unmarked six yards from goal and the German placed a right footed shot high and beyond the helpless Bursik to level the game.

The equaliser changed the game and swung the momentum of the match in favour of the visitors who seemed to take heart from Glatzel’s strike.

15 minutes from time Cardiff turned the game on its head, coming from behind to take the lead and it was Morrison who completed an eventful evening for himself.

It was yet another set piece that created the chance and a second assist of the game for the impressive Ralls.

Good movement by the Cardiff players led to captain Morrison being unmarked at the far post, he met the in-swinging corner with a powerful header that struck the crossbar on the way in to fire the Bluebirds into the ascendency.

The Potters, already ravaged by injuries and having lost both Campbell and Brown to injury in the second half, looked tired and seemed to run out of any ideas following the goal.

Michael O’Neill’s side struggled to create any chances in the closing period as the visitors took control and saw out the game for a valuable win in their hunt for a play-off place.

Takeaways

Stoke's injury crisis grows

Before the match Michael O'Neill complained that his side had ten first team players missing through injury, key players like John Obi Mikel, Sam Clucas and Steven Fletcher are all sidelined.

The Potters also relying on youngster Bursik in goal after injuries to senior keepers Adam Davies and Angus Gunn.

Now O'Neill will be sweating on the fitness of star player Campbell after he hobbled off in the second half and Jacob Brown who was forced off with a shoulder problem.

The Stoke squad was already stretched thin with two untested teenagers named on the bench for the game.

Cardiff are the Championship's form side

After a poor start to the season which saw the Bluebirds pick up just three wins in their opening thirteen games, Cardiff are now in scintillating form.

With four consecutive victories, Neil Harris's side have catapulted from bottom half mediocrity into serious play-off contenders.

Led by top scorer Kieffer Moore, Cardiff have won back-to-back away games against teams in the top six and are now just two points outside the play-offs.

Man of the match: Joe Ralls (Cardiff)

In a game of few clear cut chances it was Cardiff academy graduate Ralls who assisted both goals for the visitors.

The midfielder whipped in two pinpoint crosses from set-pieces to provide his side with the opportunity to turn the game around in the Potteries.

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