Alex Smithies

It’s still puzzling why former manager Neil Warnock appeared to ignore Smithies – and also Lee Tomlin. Both are now key members of the Bluebirds team. Smithies is cool, calm and composed, an excellent shot stopper, his ball distribution is excellent and he made a magnificent save to derby former Cardiff striker Kenneth Zohore near the end. It’s crucial, though, that Neil Etheridge keeps working to displace his rival and ensure that competition helps both of them 7

Joe Bennett

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The Bluebirds have been linked with a transfer move to sign West Brom winger Matt Phillips on a couple of occasions. Joe Bennett was introduced to the Scottish livewire in this clash and was given a torrid time. Bennett, though, stuck to his task and is in decent form right now 7

Sean Morrison (capt) – Man of the Match

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Back to his best, no doubt about that. City’s skipper is a top quality championship defender and his partnership with Curtis Nelson is developing nicely. Excelled in the air and in possession 8

Curtis Nelson

It’s clear why Aden Flint and Sol Bamba are having to bide their time in terms of securing a starting spot. Morrison and Nelson are a solid unit, complementing each other beautifully. They could yet be the rock upon which City can build a play-off challenge 8

Jazz Richards

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Has the ability to be one of Cardiff’s leading players, but this was an off night. Sloppy in possession and conceded a penalty when he fouled Filip Krovinovic. Richards is far better than he showed in this game 5

Junior Hoilett

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Put in a lot of effort, but struggled to produce the crosses and possess needed. The Canadian winger can blow hot and cold, but when he’s hot, Hoilett can be exceptional 6

Callum Paterson 

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West Brom arrived with a big Championship reputation – and were put in their place by Paterson and Co. The Scot intimidated Baggies’ defenders and scored Cardiff’s first goal. His physical presence alone is a threat – and his natural aggression takes him to another level 8

Marlon Pack

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A leader at the heart of midfield. Experience and knowhow are key components of Pack’s game and he demands 100 per cent from the players around him 7

Will Vaulks

City are starting to see the best from their Welsh in terminational midfield player. Took time to settle in South Wales after his move from Yorkshire club Rotherham, but is running into form. City’s man from the Wirrall is going to play a big part over the rest off this season 7

Gavin Whyte

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Forced to step up defensively and stuck to his task. With Nathaniel Mendez-Laing ruled out long term because of injury, Whyte is going to be a big player for the Bluebirds. City need Josh Murphy to find consistency and put more pressure on the starting wide men

Robert Glatzel

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Neil Harris believes the German striker has the ability to make a major impact. The Bluebirds’ manager rejected approached from clubs in his home country this month. He is adjusting to the physicality of Championship football and showing signs he can develop into a formidable striker at that level 7


Neil Etheridge (gk)

Not used

Aden Flint

Not used

Leandro Bacuna

For Whyte 82

Sol Samba

For Hoilett 90+4

Lee Tomlin

For Glatzel 64

Ntazana Mayembe

Not used

Josh Murphy

Not used

West Bromwich Albion: Johnstone, Robson-Kanu (Zohore 59), Bartley (Furlong 77’, Krovinović, Livermore, Phillips, Sawyers, Edwards (Austin 59), Hegazi, O’Shea, Ferguson. Subs not used: Bond, Brunt, Townsend, Barry.

Referee: Robert Jones

Attendance: 22,516