Cardiff end Whites' unbeaten run

Michael Chopra's strike earned hosts Cardiff a 2-1 Championship win over Leeds United to ease the pressure on Bluebirds manager Dave Jones.

Last Updated: 04/01/11 at 22:31

Chopra (right): Hit the winner for Cardiff

Chopra (right): Hit the winner for Cardiff

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

The fortunes of the two sides had differed since the Bluebirds left Elland Road with a 4-0 win on October 25, with Leeds going 12 games unbeaten and Cardiff winning just three of their 11 games as Simon Grayson's men nosed ahead of them in the table.

But Craig Bellamy, so often a scourge of Leeds in his Newcastle days, opened the scoring for Jones' outfit in the 11th minute and, after Robert Snodgrass had curled home a wonderful 59th-minute equaliser, Michael Chopra's opportunist strike won it for Cardiff with 11 minutes remaining.

Chopra ran on to an innocuous-looking long ball from Peter Whittingham and, for the second time in the game, the visiting defence dozed off, allowing the striker to prod home a winner.

Both sides made two changes from their last game, the most notable of which was Leeds handing left-back Ben Parker only a second start in 18 months following a horror run of injuries.

Cardiff, missing their injured England striker Jay Bothroyd, started well with three corners inside the first three minutes before Snodgrass skidded an effort wide.

It was the home side who struck first, though, with Bellamy taking advantage of some slack Leeds defending to net his fifth goal of the season.

The visiting defence failed to pick up Bellamy as he collected a short corner from Chopra and, after exchanging passes with Whittingham, he tucked home under Kasper Schmeichel.

Former Cardiff striker Ross McCormack drove a free-kick against Bellamy in the wall as Leeds looked for a way back in to the game, while at the other end Schmeichel did well to keep out efforts from Chris Burke and Bellamy.

Lee Naylor, a scorer in the October game, then lashed over when it looked easier to score as Cardiff impressed with a barrage of slick attacks.

A Bellamy free-kick from the corner of the box was well blocked by Snodgrass and Leeds somehow survived Cardiff's onslaught and a Billy Paynter header from a corner could have seen them go in level at the interval.

Cardiff continued to create chances after the restart with Burke heading over after Bellamy had bedazzled the Leeds defence again, with Grayson then losing patience with the misfiring McCormack and Max Gradel and replacing them with Lloyd Sam and Sanchez Watt.

The change reaped instant dividends as well as Leeds drew level.

Watt rolled a pass to Sam who skipped inside two challenges and slammed a shot against Tom Heaton but, from the loose ball, Snodgrass picked up possession and curled an unstoppable effort beyond Heaton for his fourth goal of the season.

Sam was withdrawn with a thigh injury just six minutes after his introduction and Parker warmed Heaton's hands with a low drive as Cardiff became the side under the cosh.

That situation soon changed, though, as Whittingham lumped a long ball forward which Chopra ran on to before prodding beyond Schmeichel who had rushed off his line to narrow the angle.

Bradley Johnson forced Heaton to tip his 30-yard drive around the post but Leeds could not fashion an equaliser.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Footer 365

Louis van Gaal denies bust up with Man Utd assistant Ryan Giggs

Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal has hit out after he was asked about his relationship with Ryan Giggs.

Roy Hodgson says Harry Kane is ready to play for England but may have to wait

Roy Hodgson says Tottenham striker Harry Kane is ready to play for England but says it is not a certainty he will be called up.

Papiss Cisse faces seven-match ban after admitting FA charge

Newcastle's Papiss Cisse faces a seven-match ban after admitting an FA charge relating to Wednesday's spitting incident.

Mail Box

Have To Trust Managers On Mata

It's all very well bemoaning the lack of action for Juan Mata, but we have to trust the judgement of Van Gaal and Mourinho. Plus Martinez Out, and Leicester are doomed...

Should Gerrard Get In This Liverpool Side?

Never mind the long goodbye, should he actually get back into this excellent Liverpool side playing with pace? Mostly we talk Manchester United, though. It's good...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company