Cardiff City match preview






• West Ham United start the 2011/12 npower Championship campaign with a home game against Cardiff City, managed by former Hammers defender Malky Mackay.

• The match will be Sam Allardyce's first competitive game since taking charge at the Boleyn Ground on 1 July. He could have four players making their debuts, with summer signings Joey O'Brien, Abdoulaye Faye, Kevin Nolan and Matt Taylor all involved in his matchday squad.

• The Hammers were relegated last season after finishing last in the Barclays Premier League. Cardiff just missed out on promotion last season after a second successive failure in the play-offs.

• This is West Ham's fifth spell outside the top flight since the promotion season of 1957/58. Those previous occasions lasted for three seasons, two seasons, one season and two seasons, and in those eight campaigns the lowest second-tier finish was seventh

• West Ham spent six seasons in the Premier League, having last been promoted in 2004/05.

• Although they lost 3-0 at Aston Villa on opening day last season, the Hammers' biggest opening day defeat came in 2002, when Newcastle United won 4-0 at St James' Park.

• West Ham have not drawn the opening game since 1994, when they drew 0-0 with Leeds United at Elland Road

• Cardiff, beginning their ninth season at this level, have only lost two of their last 16 season-openers.

• West Ham are looking for a fifth consecutive home win against Cardiff City.

• The Bluebirds have not won at West Ham since a 1-0 success on 15 April 1950, a run of 14 games without taking all the points at the Boleyn. That was the only time they have ever won at Upton Park.

West Ham's biggest home win against Cardiff came in the League Cup on 20 December 1965, with a 5-2 success. 

Team news

West Ham United

• Peter Kurucz (knee) and Gary O'Neil (ankle) are both definitely out. Julien Faubert (hamstring) is also missing but could return at Doncaster Rovers next Saturday.

• Abdoulaye Faye (hamstring) and Junior Stanislas (groin) have also been back in full training for a week, while Jack Collison has also been training fully having sat out last week's win against Real Zaragoza.

• Jordan Spence is on a season-long loan at Bristol City while Olly Lee and Cristian Montano are on month-long stays at Dagenham & Redbridge and Notts County respectively.

Cardiff City

• Malky Mackay has yet to name his first-choice keeper with David Marshall competing with Tom Heaton for the berth.

• Having had to overhaul his squad in the summer, the other big selection decision is up front with Kenny Miller set to partner Rob Earnshaw.

Last time out

Saturday 30 July 2011
Pre-season friendly
West Ham United 2-0 Real Zaragoza
West Ham United: Green, O'Brien (Spence 52), Samuel (Montano 79), Tomkins, Reid, Faubert (Barrera 39), Taylor (Sears 71), Noble (Stanislas 89), Parker (Cole 63), Nolan, Piquionne (Nouble 71)
Subs not used: Boffin, Ilunga, Collison

Tuesday 2 May 2011
Pre-season friendly
Cardiff City 0-0 Parma
Cardiff: Marshall, McNaughton, Taylor (Naylor), Hudson, Gerrard (Keinan), Whittingham, Cowie, Earnshaw (Fagan), Conway (Taiwo), Gestede (Miller), Mason. Subs not used: Heaton, Parkin, Gyepes.

Last meeting

West Ham United welcomed Cardiff City to the Boleyn on 6 February 2005. An 89th-minute winner from Welsh international midfielder Carl Fletcher settled the contest. Mark Noble was the only current Hammer on view - in fact, he is the only first-team player still at the club from that last Championship campaign. Malky Mackay was in the Hammers lineup, while Danny Gabbidon was playing for Cardiff.

West Ham United: Bywater, Mullins, Ferdinand, Mackay, Powell, Noble (Rebrov 84), Reo-Coker, Fletcher, Sheringham, Harewood, Zamora (Chadwick 61)
Subs not used: Walker, McClenahan, Brevett

Cardiff City: Alexander, Weston (Vidmar 77), Gabbidon, Lee, Langley, Barker, Collins, McAnuff, Kavanagh, Thorne, Inamoto (Ledley 86)
Subs not used: Warner, Fleetwood, Bullock

Last six meetings
(Championship unless stated)

6 February 2005 - West Ham United 1-0 Cardiff City
2 November 2004 - Cardiff City 4-1 West Ham United
28 February 2004 - West Ham United 1-0 Cardiff City
25 October 2003 - Cardiff City 0-0 West Ham United
23 September 2003 - Cardiff City 2-3 West Ham United (League Cup)
6 May 1981 - Cardiff City 0-0 West Ham United (old Second Division)

Overall record v Cardiff ( all competitions) W 24 D 15 L 8

Ten-year records

West Ham United

2010/11 Premier League 20th (33 points)
2009/10 Premier League 17th (35 points)
2008/09 Premier League 9th (51 points)
2007/08 Premier League 10th (49 points)
2006/07 Premier League 15th (41 points)
2005/06 Premier League 9th (55 points)
2004/05 Championship 6th (73 points - promoted to Premier League via play-offs)
2003/04 Championship 4th (74 points)
2002/03 Premier League 18th (42 points - relegated to Championship)
2001/02 Premier League 7th (53 points)


2010/11 Championship 4th (80 points)
2009/10 Championship 4th (76 points)
2008/09 Championship 7th (74 points)
2007/08 Championship 12th (64 points)
2006/07 Championship 13th (64 points)
2005/06 Championship 11th (60 points)
2004/05 Championship 16th (54 points)
2003/04 Championship 13th (65 points)
2002/03 Division Two 6th (81 points - promoted to the Championship via play-offs)
2001/02 Division Two 4th (83 points)
2000/01 Division Three 2nd (83 points)


• Sunday's referee will be Howard Webb, who last took charge of a Hammers game when they lost 2-1 at Manchester City on 1 May 2011.

• He took charge of the 2010 FIFA World Cup final between Spain and Netherlands in South Africa.

• Webb began officiating in Yorkshire in 1989. He took charge of his first Barclays Premier League match as a referee in October 2003 and has since been the man-in-the-middle for a host of high-profile fixtures.

• Webb also refereed the 2005 FA Community Shield, 2006 FA Trophy final and 2006 UEFA European Under-21 Championship, as well as taking charge of his first UEFA Champions League match in 2006. The former police officer was referee for the 2007 Carling Cup final and was selected as England's representative at Euro 2008, taking charge of the first match of the tournament between Austria and Poland and the Group D fixture between Greece and eventual champions Spain.

Old boys

• Malky Mackay played for West Ham in the 2004/05 season. He made 18 appearances and scored two goals.

• Others to have played for both clubs include Craig Bellamy, John Burton, Clive Charles, William Charlton, James Collins, Danny Gabbidon, Jobi MacAnuff, Keith Robson, Bill Stephens.

Next up

West Ham United welcome Aldershot Town in the Carling Cup first round on Tuesday 9 August. Cardiff travel to Oxford United on Wednesday 10 August in the same competition.

General information

• For ticket information, click here.

• Sunday's forecast in east London is for an overcast day with possible rain showers. Temperatures will peak around the 20C mark.