The cliché ‘famous victory’ will be trotted out a number of times this season, but there won’t be a more appropriate use than today’s result at Cardiff City Stadium. That’s where second half goals from Aron Gunnarsson and Fraizer Campbell gave Cardiff the new biggest upset of the season, handing title-contenders Manchester City a surprise 3-2 loss.
Despite some early dead ball chances from Bluebirds’ captain Craig Bellamy, Manchester City were in control through the first hour, with Edin Dzeko’s early second half goal giving the Sky Blues a lead they seemed to deserve. But things came apart for the visitors at the hour when Campbell created a goal for Gunnarsson, the attacker’s dash through the right of the box ending in a shot Joe Hart had to leave for the oncoming Icelandic midfielder.
Campbell opened his own account 19 minutes later, beating Pablo Zabaleta to a corner Hart should have caught. Heading home from the middle of the six-yard box, the Manchester United product gave the hosts their first lead of the season.
Eight minutes later, Campbell sealed the victory, lost in the box before heading home his second in the 87th minute. Sergio Aguero converted a David Silva cross in injury time, but with four more minutes to find an equalizer, City couldn’t prevent a 3-2 loss.
City came into the match huge favorites, their 4-0 victory over Newcastle on Monday leaving the impression that the Sky Blues would get their first win in Wales since 1954. But without Vincent Kompany at the back, the captain out with a groin injury, City’s defense suffered. With natural midfielder Javi Garcia partnering Joleon Lescott, the Sky Blues were exploited.
As a result, both last year’s second place finishers and the newly promoted Bluebirds sit with identical records after two rounds. City are 1-1-0 with a +3 goal difference, while Cardiff have conceded one more than they’ve scored.
Cardiff City: David Marshall; Matthew Connolly, Steven Caulker, Ben Turner, Andrew Taylor; Gary Medel, Aron Gunnarsson; Peter Whittingham, Kim Bo-Kyung (Jordon Mutch 90′), Craig Bellamy (Don Cowie 83′); Fraizer Campbell (Andreas Cornelius 90′); Unused substitutes: Craig Noone, Joe Lewis, Mark Hudson, Nicky Maynard
Manchester City: Joe Hart; Pablo Zabaleta, Javi Garcia, Joleon Lescott, Gael Clichy; Jesus Navas (Samir Nasri 55′), Yaya Toure, Fernandinho (James Milner 77′), David Silva; Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko (Álvaro Negredo 69′); Unused substitutes: Aleksandr Kolarov, Costel Pantilimon, Jack Rodwell, Matija Nastacic