Cardiff City: Neil Warnock insists play-offs are Bluebirds' target

When Neil Warnock took over at Cardiff City, in October 2016, the Bluebirds were battling Championship relegation.
When Neil Warnock took over at Cardiff City, in October 2016, the Bluebirds were battling Championship relegation.

Cardiff City manager Neil Warnock insists the Championship play-offs are still their target despite being in contention for automatic promotion.

The Bluebirds are second in the table, four points clear of third-placed Aston Villa, after Sunday's 1-0 win over Bristol City.

They are six points behind leaders Wolves, but Warnock thinks the play-offs are more realistic.

"That's what we're aiming for. Anything else is a bonus," he said.

Once runaway leaders Wolves made it no win in three games as they lost at Fulham on Saturday, but Warnock said it was not a result that surprised him.

"They've always been the best footballing team, Fulham. It wasn't a shock, but Wolves have still got a great squad and then you look at Aston Villa and Derby as well," he added,

"They're good teams, to be punching in that sort of category.

"I said after the game, 'You do me proud, lads.' We haven't got the Rolls Royces of the division, but, by gum, we've got some endeavour and a lot of skill in some areas as well."

The victory against Bristol City was Cardiff's eighth game without defeat in the Championship and leaves them looking increasingly likely to secure at least a play-off spot.

Warnock's men are now 15 points clear of seventh-placed Middlesbrough with 12 games left to play this season.

Sunday's win was the Bluebirds' fourth in succession, and the fourth game in a row in which they had kept a clean sheet.

That took their clean sheet tally for the campaign to 16, meeting the pre-season target Warnock had set his players in order to be sure of a play-off place.

"We're 15 points away from seventh now, that's where we're looking. We're almost in the play-offs now," he added.

"We made changes as well, people like [Greg] Halford and [Liam] Feeney [playing against Bristol City].

"I looked at our team sheet before the game with no [Sean] Morrison, [Aron] Gunnarsson or [Kenneth] Zohore.

"I would have been crying 12 months ago if that had been the case. It shows how far we've come as a squad."

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