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The Cardiff City star Neil Harris hopes will tear up the Championship

Discussion in 'Cardiff City Forum' started by Eat Y'self Fitter, 2 Dec 2019.

  1. Eat Y'self Fitter

    Eat Y'self Fitter ⭐ Forum President ⭐
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    Before a ball was kicked, many tipped Nathaniel Mendez-Laing to tear up the Championship for Cardiff City.

    The theory wasn't just based upon his undoubted ability, but the evidence given with his Premier League wonder strike at Brighton and his two-goal match-winning performance at Manchester United last time out.

    Thus the hope was there going into the opening game and beyond.

    After a dozen or so games, the Bluebirds were left scratching their heads as the flying winger struggled to hit the expected heights.

    He was hindered by a hamstring injury and his shoulders were slumped owing to a severe lack of form.

    Mendez-Laing was desperate to get back to his best. He has begun to do that, one of the players who has started to shine under new boss Neil Harris.

    He looks every bit the destroyer-in-chief City need him to be, having scored twice in his last three games and striking fear into opposition defences once again.

    With Lee Tomlin also given more of an opportunity under Harris, the Bluebirds have a cutting edge and greater fluency that appeared to be lacking at times during Neil Warnock's reign.

    It was no coincidence those two linked for Mendez-Laing's goal against Nottingham Forest that made it two wins on the trot and saw Cardiff close the gap on the top six to just three points.

    With a home game to come against bottom club Barnsley this weekend, there are high hopes the sudden surge up the table will continue.

    There are many reasons for the change in fortunes, but the form of Mendez-Laing is definitely one of them.

    Harris knows about his talent, revealing he once tried to sign the powerful wide-man for Millwall, but was beaten to the punch by Warnock and Cardiff.

    Having finally got his hands on Mendez-Laing, Harris feels it is the discipline and structure he has applied to his game which has unlocked his often frightening attacking qualities once again.

    "I tried to sign Nathaniel before," Harris said after City's 1-0 win over Nottingham Forest . "So, coming in, he was one of the players I was looking forward to working with.

    "It's a group I've looked forward to working with the last two weeks, however Nathaniel is a player I think has got real quality.

    "I've given him more discipline and more structure to his game.

    "You have to be organised and hard working off the ball, giving them organisation and discipline.

    "Your flair players, your goalscorers, sometimes they thrive off a bit of structure, but within that structure you have to give them the licence to express themselves."

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    With Mendez-Laing, Tomlin and Junior Hoilett each looking effective again and providing a cutting egde, Cardiff will feel they can continue the surge up the table.

    But everything is underpinned by the work-rate off the ball under Harris which is second to none, although that was previously a strength of Warnock too.

    Mendez-Laing and Hoilett have crucial roles to play in how Harris wants his side to press when out of possession, and in breaking quickly when Cardiff have won the ball back.

    If the level of work-rate drops, there are others waiting in the wings who Harris will turn to.

    "We've got some really good players here," Harris added. "We've got Josh Murphy on the bench, a very talented player.

    "Gavin Whyte is not in the squad today because he is coming back from injury.

    "The players have to hit levels and standards because there are players who are ready to come in and take their places."

    In the closing weeks of the Premier League campaign, Mendez-Laing was one of Cardiff's shining lights.

    He linked brilliantly with Kenneth Zohore, Bobby Reid and Murphy as a fab four in the 2-0 win at Old Trafford, setting a template many felt would be good enough to send Cardiff soaring back to promotion this season.

    With Zohore and Reid moving on and Murphy not being picked, only Mendez-Laing is flying the flag for the time being.

    But he's proving his worth and Harris is hoping there is plenty more to come still.

    How Neil Harris has got Cardiff City goal ace firing again - https://www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/cardiff-city-star-neil-harris-17344662
     
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  2. Eat Y'self Fitter

    Eat Y'self Fitter ⭐ Forum President ⭐
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    He has been "on it" of late, and good to see, when his tail is up he's almost unstoppable.
     
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  3. Travis Bickle

    Travis Bickle Ballon d'Or Winner
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    I remember last season when he tore the Liverpool/England wonder kid full back to pieces the whole game
     
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  4. Colonel Cardiffi

    Colonel Cardiffi C'mon CITY!
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    It was an absolute pleasure to see him leaving Forest players in clouds of dust. He's got a hell of a turn of pace for a human cupboard and can score a sweet goal when he wants to.
     
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  5. TH63

    TH63 How I wish you were here.
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    Good thread.

    Probably needs a longer title though
     
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  6. Colonel Cardiffi

    Colonel Cardiffi C'mon CITY!
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    :hehe: Yeah I might edit it down a bit
     
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  7. Steve R

    Steve R Ballon d'Or Winner
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    He said that about Madine mind.
     
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