Alex Smithies from Getty Images

The back four oozed confidence with the calm, composed Smithies behind them. Etheridge is a superb shot-stopper and all-round goalkeeper, but too often he kicks away possession. Smithies helped the Bluebirds retains the ball – and that make life a touch more difficult for the opposition. The Swans were unable to seriously trouble Smithies, who was safe, efficient and was delighted with his clean sheet 7

Lee Peltier 

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At his best. ‘Pelts’ faced up to pace ace Wayne Routledge and kept him quiet. Routledge even knocked the ball past Cardiff’s right-back at one stage and challenged him to a foot race. The Swansea man couldn’t get away from his marker and the danger was clear. Solid in the tackle and tried to get forward when he could 7

Sean Morrison (capt)

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Great to see captain ‘Mozzer’ back at the heart of defence. Played a key role in helping Cardiff keep the clean sheet and his partnership with the impressive Nelson blossomed. Went up for set pieces and threatened the Swans, while he was a major force defensively 7

Curtis Nelson 

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There is a good balance and feel to the Morrison/Nelson link at the heart of defence. It works and they were crucial figures in keeping Swansea’s attacking players quiet. Nelson’s development and progress is plain to see and hopefully he can grow again over the rest of this season 7

Joe Bennett – Man of the Match

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I almost forgot Andre Ayew was playing – such was the efficiency of left-back Bennett. Defended in an aggressive, yet composed style and worked to get forward and fire in. Those teasing crosses which can be so dangerous 8

Marlon Pack 

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Organises those around him, verbally encouraging team-mates. Still, though, playing below his best and we need to see more of Pack’s genuine ability on the ball. Still played his part in Cardiff’s fiercely competitive performance 6

Leandro Bacuna

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Gets stuck in, can pick a pass, has massive energy and loved going head-to-head with Swansea’s fast midfield players. Never shirks a challenge, came up with some decent long range passes and looked as though he really enjoyed it out there 7

Gavin Whyte 

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With Mendez-Laing out for the season, Whyte is going to be a key player over the rest of this season. He has ability and high levels of skill. Inconsistent crossing is a current drawback, but he a winger learning his Championship trade and starting to look the part. Pretty good at tracking back when needed. Made way for Josh Murphy after 70 minutes 6

Lee Tomlin

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Playmaker Tomlin has committed to Cardiff by signing a new contract and in this form he could be the spark to fire up a play-offs challenge. Has added match fitness, tenacity and a hunger to work for the team to the tricks, flicks and creativity which can be a nightmare for opposing defenders. His football brain is a major asset – he sees opportunities others may not 8

Junior Hoilett

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Seems to be lacking a little in confidence. Worked hard trying to make things happen, but too often nothing came from his efforts. May be worth playing Hoilett at Carlisle and and work through this patch 6

Robert Glatzel

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Starting to settle into life at Championship level and impressed at times. Missed a big chance during the first half and, for my liking, lost too many aerial battles. Worked hard in attack, though, before going off with Paterson taking over the number nine role with 20 minutes left. The Scot is strong in the air and headed against the bar 6


Neil Etheridge

Not used

Aden Flint

Not used

Will Vaulks

Not used

Jazz Richards

Not used

Josh Murphy

For Whyte (70)

Callum Paterson

For Glatzel (70)

Danny Ward

Not used

Swansea City: Woodman, Grimes, Celina, Routledge, Brewster, Wilmot, Ayew, Roberts, Naughton, Byers, Cabango. Subs – none used: Nordfeldt, Guehi, Fulton, Bastón, Kalulu, Dhanda, Bidwell.

Referee: Tony Harrington

Attendance: 28,529