Barnsley were beaten by a stoppage time winner at the Cardiff City Stadium on Saturday afternoon, as the Bluebirds stole all three points to earn a 3-2 victory in the Sky Bet Championship.
The Reds took the lead twice in the game courtesy of Conor Chaplin and Bambo Diaby, but were pegged back on both occasions, before talisman Lee Tomlin stepped up to fire Cardiff in front in the fourth minute of added time.
Following the Reds second victory of the season against Hull City last Saturday, they travelled to the Cardiff City Stadium, looking to carry over that momentum, as they searched for their maiden win on the road.
Head Coach Struber named an unchanged eleven from the team that started in that 3-1 win over the Tigers, as the Reds went in pursuit of two wins in two.
Barnsley’s last success over the Bluebirds came back in 2016, in a thrilling 4-3 win and they looked on course for a promising start here again.
Alex Mowatt’s quick thinking from a corner routine presented an opening for Chaplin on the edge of the area, he connected with a first-time shot, which was blocked away well by the head of Aden Flint.
Minutes later, Cardiff broke forward on the counter as the ball was played forward for Junior Hoilett. The Canadian looked to curl his effort in the top left corner, but narrowly missed the target.
Just seconds after, Bähre broke clear in midfield for Barnsley and picked out a perfectly weighted pass for Chaplin on the inside right of the area. The striker composed himself in front of goal and calmly slotted past Neil Etheridge to put the Reds 1-0 up after 17 minutes.
However, Cardiff hit back almost immediately. Flint was the man to deliver, as he got on the end of Hoilett’s cross and nodded into the back the of the net to make it 1-1 three minutes later.
On the 27th minute, the Bluebirds had the ball beyond Sami Radlinger once again. Gary Madine thought he had fired the home side in front, but the linesman raised his flag for offside.
Up the other end, Barnsley’s frontman Cauley Woodrow stung the palms of Etheridge with a strong strike from 25-yards, but the goalkeeper was able to gather comfortably at the second attempt.
With just under five minutes to go before half-time, Woodrow was involved heavily again. The striker fought his way to by-line before cutting the ball back for the onrushing Chaplin, who hit a right-footed shot just over the bar.
The fourth official signalled for an additional one minute to be played at the end of the half, but neither side could fathom another clear-cut opportunity to edge themselves in front.
Half-time: Cardiff City 1-1 Barnsley
As the second half restarted, the Reds came out of the blocks in superb fashion.
Chaplin picked up possession on the right flank and flashed a dangerous looking ball across the face of goal for Diaby. The defender got there first to bundle it over the line with his chest and deservedly put Barnsley 2-1 up.
The Reds continued to attack, and on the hour mark, Chaplin crossed for Woodrow, but the striker couldn’t quite direct his header on target.
Then, on the 65th minute, Cardiff made a change to try and influence the game, as Ward replaced Madine.
The substitute wasted no time getting into the action and made an instantaneous impact when he drew the Bluebirds level in the 68th minute with his first touch.
With five minutes to go, Marlon Pack got on the end of a bouncing ball after a scramble in the area. He turned and shot first-time, but luckily for Barnsley his effort flew over the crossbar.
Seconds later, Lee Tomlin showed good work on the edge of the area to make space for a shot. He fizzed in a low right-footed effort which dropped inches wide of Radlinger’s left post.
There were five minutes added on and Cardiff were able to nick it at the death.
Pack had an earlier chance squandered after a corner on the left, but Tomlin popped up with seconds left on the clock to volley home for the Bluebirds to make it 3-2 to the home side in stoppage time – a goal which earnt them all three points.
Full-time: Cardiff City 3-2 Barnsley
CARDIFF XI: Etheridge, Peltier, Bennett, Flint, Bacuna (Vaulks, 74), Pack (C), Nelson, Tomlin, Mendez-Laing, Madine (Ward, 65), Hoilett (Murphy, 59).
Substitutes not used: Smithies, Morrison, Paterson, Richards.
REDS XI: Radlinger, J. Williams, B. Williams, Diaby, Andersen, Brown (Schmidt, 82), Woodrow, Bähre (Odour, 90+3), Chaplin, Halme, Mowatt (C).
Substitutes not used: Collins, Dougall, Thomas, Sibbick, Mottley-Henry.