On Saturday 2nd April 2022, 17th placed Cardiff City host 16th placed Swansea City in the EFL Championship. Even though this match is between teams in the low mid-table, this is the South Wales Derby. So, both Cardiff and Swansea will want to have the bragging rights in Wales. Back in October 2021 when these two teams met earlier this season, Swansea brushed aside Cardiff 3-0 with goals from Jamie Paterson, Joel Piroe, and Jake Bidwell. Coming into this match, Cardiff won 2-1 at home against Stoke City, and Swansea drew goalless with Birmingham.
Cardiff come into this game having won 2-1 at home against Stoke City. Thomas Doyle and Jordan Hugill scored for Cardiff in that game. This result leaves Cardiff with a record of 13 wins, seven draws, and 18 losses. xGA predicted Cardiff to concede 43 times so far this season, but in reality, they have shipped 56 goals, a woeful underperformance at the back.
As shown in the above shot map, Cardiff are not much better either. They have missed quite a few big goalscoring chances this season. The fact that their joint top goalscorers this season have netted only five times each speaks volumes about their goalscoring problems.
Cardiff’s most successful threat creator this season is Ryan Giles from both open play and set-pieces. There are three Cardiff players whose threat creation scores exceed 10. So, we can imply that creating chances is not a problem for Cardiff but finishing off these chances is their weakness.
Swansea City come into this game having drawn 0-0 with Birmingham City. This means Swansea’s record now stands at 13 wins, nine draws, and 15 losses. xG predicted Swansea to score 39 goals this season until now. But they have slightly overperformed by netting 41 times.
Swansea may have slightly overperformed in attack, but as shown in the above chart, relative to the league, they are below average in goalscoring. There are five important categories in which Swansea are ranked below the 60th percentile – goals per 90, xG per 90, assists per 90, xA per 90, and key passes per 90. They come below this rank in categories like headed shots per 90, long ball accuracy, crosses per 90, and aerial duels per 90 as well.
This may be a lower mid-table clash but it is a derby. So both Cardiff and Swansea will want to win this game. Cardiff will want to avenge the 0-3 loss earlier this season, and Swansea will want to maintain the bragging rights in South Wales.