Cardiff City: Victories can win the fans back says Russell Slade

Russell Slade
Russell Slade took over as Cardiff City manager in October 2014

Cardiff manager Russell Slade hopes a return to winning ways can boost the club's waning attendance figures.

A crowd of just 4,194 watched Cardiff beat Colchester 3-1 in the FA Cup third round to claim their first win since November.

It was the lowest ever Cardiff City attendance at Cardiff City Stadium, which opened in 2009.

"If we can start winning matches and get some momentum, then people will come back I'm sure," said Slade.

Cardiff's average home attendance in the Premier League last season was 27,430.

But following relegation to the Championship and a mixed campaign so far in the second tier, that figure has dropped to 19,333 to date this term.

Friday's attendance against Colchester was lower than the previous smallest-ever crowd of 5,545 that watched Cardiff's League Cup match against Dagenham and Redbridge, shortly after they moved to the stadium in 2009.

Lone fan at Cardiff City Stadium
A young fan surveys the pitch at the start of the match against Colchester United at Cardiff City Stadium

Fans turned on Slade following Sunday's 4-2 home loss to Watford and some of the few supporters that did turn up for the Colchester match protested against owner Vincent Tan's rebranding of the club.

Slade admits the significant drop in numbers could affect the team.

"You want an atmosphere, you want it to be very difficult for the opposition when they come here," he said.

"Playing at home should be an advantage but, clearly, when the crowd's not like that, it's not such an advantage.

"I can't make people come and watch the team. My focus is on the team and how we're doing.

"It's just after Christmas and it's on TV, it's been an expensive time for most people. It's difficult."

Joe Ralls's deflected effort gave the Championship side a 1-0 half-time lead against their League One opponents.

Kadeem Harris's hooked volley doubled the lead before Kenwyne Jones headed in seconds after coming on.

Freddie Sears pulled one back for Colchester with a low drive, but Cardiff were comfortable winners.

The draw for the fourth round takes place live on BBC One on Monday 5 January at 1935 GMT.

Cardiff's next match is at home to Fulham in the Championship on Saturday 10 January.

Cardiff Blues rugby union team played three seasons at Cardiff City Stadium, and attracted fewer than 4,194 fans for some games at the ground, before returning to Cardiff Arms Park in 2012.

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