Cardiff City’s indifferent recent run of form continued in the FA Cup third round on the weekend, as the Bluebirds came back from two goals down to salvage a replay against League Two Carlisle United as the scores ended 2-2.
Neil Harris’s side were looking to avoid an upset against a side who made a round trip of 610 miles from Cumbria, and Carlisle were also looking to progress past the third round of the competition for the first time since 2015-16.
It went to plan for the Cumbrians from the off, as they took the lead after just twelve minutes and went into half time two goals to the good, much to the displeasure of the Cardiff fans and the apathetic crowd of 5,828 that were in attendance.
Despite that, Cardiff bounced back in the second half courtesy of goals from Callum Paterson and Gavin Whyte.
Carlisle were unlucky not to win the tie, however, with Hallam Hope lifting his shot over the crossbar from ten yards out, after a nice one-two with Mike Jones on the edge of the penalty area.
The Bluebirds have now won just one of their last seven games in all competitions, representing a disappointing run of form. Despite that, the performance of Gavin Whyte for the home side was one of the positives that Neil Harris no doubt took from the game.
Here, we take a closer look at Whyte’s showing against the Cumbrians…
QUIZ: Can you remember Cardiff’s last fifteen league positions?
The 23-year-old made his nineteenth appearance of the season for Cardiff in this game, which was his thirteenth start in all competitions.
Whyte played the full match for Cardiff City, and was responsible for the second Bluebirds goal, sending an arrowing header into the back of the net off the upright from a Callum Paterson cross to level the tie against the fourth-tier side.
The Northern Irish winger’s statistics proved he had a high work rate for his side and was efficient with the ball at his feet, notching up a passing accuracy percentage of 94% during the game.
Whyte also had joy out on the wing against the League Two side, registering a crossing accuracy of 75%, suggesting his deliveries were troubling the Carlisle back line regularly.
Despite coming in at a height of 5’5″, an area which Whyte should look to improve on is his aerial duels, with the 23-year-old winning less than half of his battles in the air during the game. In total, Whyte won 42.6% of his duels.
Cardiff will be looking for Whyte to replicate his showing in the replay between the sides at Brunton Park.