Cardiff City's manager Mackay walks onto the pitch before their English Premier League soccer match against Liverpool at Anfield in Liverpool

Malky Mackay “deeply upset” by Vincent Tan’s email

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It’s hard not to have massive sympathy for Cardiff City manager Malky Mackay.

In the past week he was berated by club owner Vincent Tan for wanting to add players in the January transfer window and sent an email with the ultimatum – resign or be sacked.

It left the 41-year-old in a tight spot and “deeply upset.”

Should he resign to join a new club with an owner that had some sense?

Or should he press on, vaulted by the incredible support of the Cardiff fans knowing that such a move would likely lead to his demise?

For Mackay, the decision came swift: “I will not resign,” he said ahead of Saturday’s match with Liverpool. The Bluebirds went on to lose the fixture 1-3 and with the writing on the wall, Mackay saluted the fans for what appeared to be the final time.

Then on Sunday, something unexpected happened. Tan rescinded his ultimatum.

Mackay spoke about the whirlwind situation today in a press conference.

“I did feel I was going to lose my job on the weekend.

“The email deeply upset me. I declined to resign and expected to be sacked over the weekend. To give the fans a clap was something I wanted to do for the support they had given me.”

Mackay confirmed that discussions with the club’s chairman had already taken place: “My representative has been talking to Mehmet [Dalman] in recent days because I have been busy looking after the football side,” he said.

“I don’t know if we can talk. Mehmet has been trying to do this for three months, as have I. There are certain areas that have to be addressed that were in the email. I will find out when I go to the meeting.

“At that point I will take stock of where I am.

“The club has worked very well in the last couple of years, especially when Gethin Jenkins, Alan Whitely and TG were here. Mehmet Dalman gives us a stable hand but the owner is a man who makes the decisions.”

With the episode seemingly coming to a close, Mackay restated his commitment to the club: “I will not resign. I love my job here. I love working and living in Cardiff and I’m proud of my team and I have a determination to look after that.”

Heart of a lion, Malky Mackay has. This Thursday his Cardiff City side take on Southampton at the Cardiff City stadium.

MLS Snapshot: Orlando City SC 2-1 Montreal Impact

Cyle Larin, Orlando City SC

The game in 100 words (or less): For weeks, it was a widely held belief that the Montreal Impact would snatch up the sixth and final playoff place in the Eastern Conference with little or no resistance from their opposition. As they went six games unbeaten (four wins), all looked to be setting up perfect for the club that fired Frank Klopas midseason, but there was another team in the race for sixth that kept winning themselves: Orlando City SC. On Saturday night, Montreal and Orlando City faced off at the Citrus, with the expansion Lions claiming their fourth-straight victory with a 2-1 triumph. Montreal now holds a one-point lead on Orlando in the race for sixth, and have two games in hand, but it’s no longer a foregone conclusion L’Impact will qualify for the playoffs no resistance whatsoever.

[ MORE: | Week 30 TOTW | POTW ]

Three moments that mattered

33′ — Bush’s mistake gifts Larin the opening goal — Larin did what your taught to do as a striker — “put it on frame, test the goalkeeper” — but in no universe does a shot so feeble have any business finding the back of the net. Evan Bush has been great this year. Hopefully (for Montreal’s sake), this howler doesn’t turn into the yips with the playoffs looming.

43′ — Hall’s “mistake” gifts Oduro an equalizer — Dominic Oduro equalized in the 43rd minute, when he took the ball out of the hands of Tally Hall and smashed it into the back of the net, but the goal should have been disallowed due to Hall having full control of the ball.

80′ — Hines hits the winner for Orlando — Seb Hines put the ball back into the mixer and just so happened to find the back of the net in the 80th minute. Sometimes that’s all it takes.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: Seb Hines

Goalscorers: Larin (33′), Oduro (43′), Hines (80′)

MLS Snapshot: NY Red Bulls 2-1 Columbus Crew SC

Bradley Wright-Phillips, New York Red Bulls
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The game in 100 words (or less): Two weeks in a row Columbus Crew SC have had a chance to go top of the Eastern Conference with a victory, and two weeks in a row Crew SC have failed to take a single point from massively important fixtures. Their latest defeat, a 2-1 humbling at the hands of the East-leading New York Red Bulls, started so well for Gregg Berhalter’s side, but was undone by a pair of costly, comedic defensive errors that allowed Lloyd Sam and Bradley Wright-Phillips (15th of the season) to erase an early deficit (Justin Meram) and win all three points. The result not only keeps the Red Bulls top of the East, but gives them a three- and four-point cushion with three and two games in hand on their nearest competitors., D.C. United and New England Revoltion respectively. For Crew SC, they’re four points back of the Red Bulls in fourth place, one point ahead of fifth-place Toronto FC, who have a game in hand.

[ MORE: | Week 30 TOTW | POTW ]

Three moments that mattered

9′ — Meram pokes it past Robles for an early lead — Meram “earned” his goal all the way back in midfield, when the Iraqi international’s mazy run took a routine turnover inside Crew SC’s defensive half and turned it into a dangerous counter-attacking opportunity. Harrison Afful overlapped and provided the cross for Meram to send home.

12′ — Sam capitalizes on multiple mistakes to equalize — Crew SC pass the ball out of the back. They don’t boot it forward to clear. It’s just what they do. Sometimes, that’ll bite you. When your goalkeeper and right back both have blunders clearing the ball 10 seconds apart, you probably deserve to concede an ugly, scrappy goal.

21′ — Wright-Phillips capitalizes on more defensive gaffes — See the above description for Red Bulls goal no. 1.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: Damien Perrinelle

Goalscorers: Meram (9′), Sam (12′), Wright-Phillips (21′)