Cardiff City vs. Crystal Palace: Preview, Live Stream for Carling Cup Semifinal

Nicholas GossCorrespondent IJanuary 19, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 10:  Anthony Gardner of Crystal Palace (C) scores their first goal with a header during the Carling Cup Semi Final First Leg match between Crystal Palace and Cardiff City at Selhurst Park on January 10, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Crystal Palace are poised to make an unexpected trip to Wembley for the Carling Cup Final if they can hold their 1-0 advantage from the first leg against Cardiff City in Tuesday's second-leg match.

Palace will travel to Cardiff City Stadium for the second leg of this semifinal fixture, with the winner moving on to London to take on one of the Premier League's best, Manchester City or Liverpool.

Palace defender Anthony Gardner scored the only goal of the first leg, and with another strong defensive performance, the club will make its first cup final appearance at Wembley since 1990.

Let's look at a complete preview for this exciting Carling Cup semifinal match.

Where: Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff, Wales

Watch: Fox Soccer Plus

Live Stream:

When: Tuesday, Jan. 24 at 2:45 p.m. EST

Player to watch for Cardiff City: Kenny Miller

Cardiff City forward Kenny Miller has scored eight goals with four assists in the Championship this season, and had a goal disallowed in the first leg that would have resulted in a draw.

Instead his club are down a goal and they need him to play better in the second leg. Miller must lead the Cardiff attack or they will not make the final in Wembley.

For the competition, Miller has one goal and an assist.

Player to watch for Crystal Palace: Anthony Gardner

The former Tottenham defender gives Crystal Palace a talented player at the back and a good amount of experience as well.

Gardner's goal in the first leg is the difference in the tie right now, and he will play an important role in maintaining that advantage for Palace.

Expect Gardner to play a fantastic match on Tuesday.

Key Matchup: Crystal Palace back four vs. Cardiff City forwards

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 10:  Kenny Miller (9) and Mark Hudson of Cardiff City (5) react as referee Mike Dean disallows a goal during the Carling Cup Semi Final First Leg match between Crystal Palace and Cardiff City at Selhurst Park on January 10, 2012
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

With only a one-goal advantage from the first leg, Cardiff City will no doubt send all they have at the Crystal Palace back four, and it will be a fun battle to watch unfold.

The Palace defense has allowed just 25 goals in the Championship this season, which is second to West Ham for the fewest given up.

On the semifinal stage, this matchup will be quite exciting to watch.

What They're Saying

Palace manager Dougie Freedman spoke about the upcoming semifinal match, via the Streatham Guardian:

It would be massive to get to the final.

I am delighted the club is moving forward and everything is changing.

Standards are being raised and everyone is buying into that, not just the players on the pitch, but the staff around the club as well.

We have had a lot of nerve-wracking nights at Selhurst Park over the last few years and to have nights like the first leg last Tuesday and at Manchester United, Brighton and Millwall, is great for us as players.

Prediction: Palace win 1-0 and advance to Carling Cup Final

Crystal Palace has had a ton of success in the Carling Cup this season, and after winning at Old Trafford earlier in the quarterfinal, they will have every ounce of confidence needed to advance to the final on Tuesday.

Their strong defense will not surrender a goal for a second straight match against Cardiff City, and Palace will find one goal for a 2-0 aggregate score to win the tie.