Joe Ralls hails Neil Etheridge penalty heroics

Joe Ralls hailed penalty king Neil Etheridge after the Cardiff goalkeeper procured a slice of Premier League history.

Etheridge joined former Tottenham stopper Erik Thorstvedt in the record books after saving Kenedy’s stoppage-time spot-kick in Cardiff’s 0-0 draw with Newcastle.

The pair are the only goalkeepers in Premier League history to save penalties in both of their first two matches in the competition.

“I’m not sure how he’s feeling, it’s amazing to save two penalties in two games,” Cardiff midfielder Ralls said.

“But we’re used to seeing those saves in training and Neil’s done well in the two games.

“He’s carried on from last season when we had one of the best clean sheet records in the Championship.

“Neil should get good acknowledgement for that and we’re going to need big saves at big times again this season.”

Etheridge had saved a penalty in Cardiff’s 2-0 defeat at Bournemouth on the opening day of the season.

And the Philippines international guessed correctly in the 96th-minute, diving to his left to push out Kenedy’s weak attempt and secure Cardiff’s first point since returning to the Premier League.

It probably should have been three after Newcastle substitute Isaac Hayden was shown a straight red card after 65 minutes, but Cardiff were unable to make their pressure and extra man count.

“If we had lost the game it would have deflated us with how the game went,” Ralls said.

“It’s nice to get the first point, it gets us on the board.

“But in the two games we haven’t created that many chances and we’re going to need goals out of nothing and from set-pieces.

“We’re not going to have 10, 15, 20 chances a game in this league and we’re going to have to be clinical.”

Newcastle are also off the mark after an opening-day defeat to Tottenham and there were mixed emotions in their dressing room too at the end.

Rafael Benitez’s side created the best opportunities in the first half with Etheridge twice denying Ayoze Perez.

But Newcastle fashioned little in the second half either side of Hayden’s dismissal until Cardiff captain Sean Morrison handled in the dying seconds.

“We’ve got to look at a point as a positive because we had 10 men,” said defender Paul Dummett.

“We knew before the game that their style of play was to get the ball up top and try and and bully us a bit.

“But we didn’t let that happen and our goalkeeper hasn’t had to make any saves.

“We only had one right-back (Javier Manquillo) with us and he went off with an injury.

“We’ve brought on someone who is not a right-back and he got sent off, so it shows our teamwork to keep a clean sheet.”

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

Serving quality football news from around the globe. No click-bait.