October 29th, 2012
The Tavern of the Taeguk Warrior is pleased to host it’s very first outside contributor, CJay. He was at the match for Kim Bo-Kyung‘s debut start for Cardiff City last Saturday. A longtime supporter of the Bluebirds, he’s been graciously illuminating the Tavern with his first hand accounts of Kim’s time with Cardiff. [Note: the post would have gone out sooner had it not been for chaos at the Tavern -we’re still riding out Hurricane Sandy wreaking havok in the area, as well as a new infant girl just born last Thursday evening. As a matter of fact, water is coming into my house, at 1:30 am. While I get the mop, here’s our man in Cardiff’s excellent match report].
Kim Bo-Kyung’s debut start for Cardiff / Match Report by CJay
October 27, 2012
Finally after 4 brief substitute appearances against Millwall, Crystal Palace, Blackpool and Birmingham, Kim Bo-Kyung finally made his first start for Cardiff against Burnley in what was previously built up by fans as a very close game. In the most recent weeks leading up to the game, there had been a lot of talk amongst Cardiff fans as to whether Kim wasn’t playing because he didn’t have the talent, wasn’t adapting to life in the UK, or couldn’t get in the team due to the managers preferred players. Well come 5PM Saturday evening, there was no doubt in anyone’s mind that Kim Bo-Kyung is a fantastic player and has the talent to succeed for Cardiff as well as the Korean National side.
Cardiff City started the day having 6 consecutive home wins this season, scoring 14 goals, conceding 4 goals and lying second in the table behind Leicester City due to goal difference (both teams were on 25 points). Burnley were the divisions top scorers, with Charlie Austin looking to equal a Burnley record of scoring in 8 consecutive matches (provided he scored in today’s game).
Kim Bo Kyung came into the matchday squad because of injuries to Craig Bellamy and Tommy Smith, started the match playing Left Midfield, but regularly swapped sides with Craig Noone on the opposite wing. Firstly, it was great to see Kim lining up with the rest of the team before the game started, and whilst there may be a few problems in communication, at the moment Kim definitely looked happy to be getting his first start whilst mingling with his team mates.
Kim’s first major touches/impact, came 2 minutes into the match after quickly sprinting to intercept a poor touch by a Burnley player just outside the Cardiff penalty area -then knocking it around him and quickly feeding the ball forwards to Joe Mason just before getting wiped out by the oncoming Burnley defender. It was the spark that instigated Cardiff’s first goal. Mason proceeded to drive the ball towards the Burnley goal whilst the referee allowed play to continue after the foul on Kim. A quick layoff to Noone brought a powerful 30 yard left footed strike smashed against the far post. It fell to the feet of Mason just outside the 6 yard box, and after some quick touches of the ball, shot into the top corner, scoring the first goal of the match after 3 minutes.
The next major involvement Kim had in the match came a few minutes later. After an amazing 60 yard pass from Whittingham found Mason sprinting between the Burnley defenders and Masons shot hitting the post, Kim was the first player to follow up the rebounded ball. Instantly passing back to Mason to avoid the challenge of a Burnley player, Kim then sprinted into a massive space behind the Burnely defense – and if Mason had supplied a return ball to him, Kim would have had an open goal to aim at. Mason was unable to find a pass or produce a shot, and was tackled with the ball going out for a corner.
The next few minutes Cardiff continued to increase the pressure on the Burnley defense with Kim getting some more time on the ball. Kim was starting to show why he cost Cardiff £1,200,000. When in possession of the ball, he never panicked, choosing either to sprint into open space if needed or quickly passing it off to the nearest available player. Kim and Whittingham began to form a good understanding, often trading passes together. Kim was also encouraged by the Cardiff left back Andrew Taylor to push forward at times with rudimentary signals, but clearly the communication problems wasn’t that big an issue. Kim never looked uncomfortable in possession and often found himself in great positions. Kim also drifted into the center of midfield regularly, swapping wings with Noone on occasion.
Kim’s first shot at goal came after coming infield off the left wing, a deflected cross from Noone falling at Kim’s feet just outside the penalty area. After immediately bringing the ball under control, and using some Messi-esque foot control, Kim flicked the ball away from an oncoming Burnley defender, then set his sights on goal. He smashed a rightfooted shot -just wide of the far post. Had the shot been on target, the keeper may have struggled to save the shot, as his vision screened by a Burnley defender.
Later into the half, Kim received the ball outside the Cardiff penalty area. After almost losing the ball due to a poor touch, Kim set up Mason again. Mason’s subsequent 65 yard run could have resulted in a penalty but the referee judged Mason’s stumble after a poor challenge to be nothing more than a stumble.
During the build up for the second goal 4 minutes before the end of the first half, Cardiff pressured the Burnley back four after a goal kick, resulting in an interception by Noone. He broke forward at speed and lashed a dipping 25 yard shot from goal. Burnsley’s goal keeper managed to get a touch but the shot was still good enough to just cross the goal line. Cardiff’s dominance should have resulted in a larger margin at half time.
The second half continued the same way the first half did, with Cardiff controlling possession and playing some great football. During one attack, a Craig Noone pass to an oncoming Kim could have resulted in a shot, but unselfishly Kim provided a lovely pass through the defense in the penalty area finding a Cardiff striker. The ball eventually fell back to Noone whose shot then hit the crossbar.
Burnley tried to come away from the match with something positive, as a quick break resulted in a snapshot from Sam Vokes and an equally quick save from Marshall prevented Burnley from making it 2-1.
Kimbo continued to impress, playing much of the same style as he did in the first half. One memorable moment before being substituted came after a clearance from the Cardiff defense fell to Kim Bo, who kicked the ball from behind/over his head, finding a breaking Cardiff attacker.
After 78 minutes of play, Kim was eventually substituted for Aron Gunnarsson. The whole Cardiff stadium rose to applaud the substituted Kim, giving him a standing ovation. He was chanted at by the Cardiff fans to ‘Do the Ayatollah,’ which he subsequently did before shaking the hand of manager Malky Mackay -who gave him an approving congratulatory pat on the back.
Cardiff scored next in the 82nd minute, a corner whipped in from Whittingham found the head of Matt Connolly, whose free header found the back of the net. Karim Frei then came on in the 83rd minute and looked a lively addition to the squad, replacing the very impressive Craig Noone. Another fantastic 40 yard diagonal pass in the 85th minute from Peter Whitingham found the head of Rudy Gestede, and the oncoming Aron Gunnarsson was able to tap the ball past the keeper and into the net to seal the 4-0 win for Cardiff.
A crowd of 21,191 watched the match on a slightly chilly day in Cardiff, but the performance by the team was definitely something that would warm the hearts of the Bluebird supporters.
After the match, on the Cardiff messageboards, fans showed their feeling towards Kim’s performance with a very positive reaction. 99% of fans thought Kim was fantastic and a great addition to the matchday squad, with many questioning why he hadn’t started in previous matches. They pleaded to the manager to keep the same side that played Burnley for the away match against Bolton on Saturday.
Cardiff are now top of the table, with 28 points and a +11 goal difference, the win against Burnley increasing the consecutive home wins to 7 matches. Another two home wins will equal the club record of 9 consecutive home wins in a season. Cardiff are also unbeaten at home in 13 matches if you include the previous seasons matches.
So a very positive start for Kim Bo-Kyung and he will definitely feel pleased with his performance. Look for him to start again at Bolton, where he could face a fellow South Korean, Lee Chung Yong. The game Kicks off at 17:20 PM GMT as the game is live on Sky Sports.
Finally, Well Done Kimbo, a great start that can be built upon to secure a place in the match day squad for the coming games.