By Miguel Padilla
San Antonio FC is currently in a mid-season break from USL Championship play. SAFC announced on May 31st that they would be playing Cardiff City from 2018-2019 English Primer League in a friendly match at Toyota Field. Since the announcement, there has been buzz and excitement in the air to face a club from a renowned top flight league. While SAFC has played some excellent clubs from Liga MX, (last year Santos Laguna) this will mark the first time a European club from any tier makes the trip across the pond to the Lone Star State to face the Alamo City Boys. In about 24 hours, both clubs will take the pitch in a historic match and we’ll give you a bit of insight on Cardiff City.
Nicknamed The Bluebirds, Cardiff City hails from Wales and was founded in 1899 and play their home matches at Cardiff City Stadium with a capacity of 33,316. The kit colors for the club are primarily blue and white. Cardiff City is the only club from outside of England to win the FA Cup, having done so in 1927. They are also 22 time Welsh Cup winners and last appeared in a final during the 2012 Football League Cup Final, losing to Liverpool on penalties 3-2 after finishing 2-2 in extra time.
Cardiff City in 2017-2018 enjoyed success in the EFL Championship finishing second to champions Wolverhampton and were automatically promoted to the top flight EPL. Cardiff City enjoyed a 27 win season, with 90 points and a plus 30 goal differential. The current manager is Neil Warnock.
The 2018-2019 season was a tough one, and started with tragedy. On January 22nd, it was reported and eventually confirmed that Cardiff’s newest striker 28 year old Emiliano Sala from Argentina had passed away when a small plane he was in crashed into the English Channel as he was making his way to Wales from Nantes, France. Club and fans came together to honor and pay respects.
Cardiff City finished the season in the relegation zone missing out of staying in the EPL by two points to Brighton and recorded 10 victories. Victor Camarasa and Bobby De Cordova-Reid lead Cardiff City with 5 goals a piece. Some notable matches in the 2018-2019 EPL season were a tough but close loss to Arsenal 3-2, a 2-1 win over fellow promoted club Wolverhampton and a huge upset by defeating Manchester United 2-0 at Old Trafford.
Cardiff City enters the 2019-2020 season back in the EFL Championship but they do not expect to stay there long with recent signings during the transfer window. They have added Goalkeeper Joe Day, defender Curtis Nelson, midfielder Will Vaulks, and Aaron Bolger, the 19 year old Irish kid with high potential to be a star.
San Antonio FC and Cardiff City will face each other at Toyota Field tomorrow night (July 13, 2019) at 7:30 PM CST (1:30 AM in Cardiff). Tickets are still available but selling fast.
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