Mick McCarthy reveals what caused the mass melee which took place after Cardiff v Watford in the Championship on Saturday afternoon.
The Hornets claimed a dramatic 2-1 victory in Wales to move back into the automatic promotion places to have the Bluebirds boss is first loss at the club.
Cardiff took an early lead when Francisco Sierralta turned Josh Murphy’s cross into his own net, coming in the 15th minute.
However Watford levelled immediately as Nathaniel Chalobah drove home, smashing the ball into the bottom right corner, finishing it stylishly.
Watford won it four minutes into added time thanks to Adam Masina’s thumping free-kick past Dillon Phillips.
Xisco Munoz’s men had found their feet, and had opportunities to go in front before half-time, seeing an overhead kick effort tipped over the bar.
After Ismaïla Sarr’s trickery won a free-kick on the corner of the penalty area, Masina hit a swerving set-piece goalwards and the ball flashed through Dillon Phillips and into the net to then produce wild celebrations.
The game ended, but with a mass melee playing out, and now Cardiff City manager Mick McCarthy reveals the reason behind it.
Top left. Sierralta proper winds up Aden Flint hahaha. Masina can’t even keep a straight face pic.twitter.com/4X5QiGhecZ
— • (@louorns) March 13, 2021
What caused the unsavoury scenes following the full time whistle was the late goal celebration.
McCarthy said after the match that Watford defender Francisco Sierralta provoked a reaction from Cardiff centre-back Aden Flint by the manner in which he celebrated.
The manager said Sierralta “screamed in his face and ran off like a big coward” before he was forcefully down the tunnel after the game.
McCarthy understands that emotions were running high, but he also believes the celebrations could have been more gracious.
“There was a guy who got booked for fouling Flinty in the box,” McCarthy said after the match. “He just ran and screamed in his face and ran off like a big coward.
“Maybe if you go and push Flinty you should stand up and see the recriminations.
“I’m glad he didn’t! Because Flinty might have boxed him one and he would have had a red card.
“Listen, I understand their celebrations at the end of the game, but I do think it’s good to be magnanimous in victory as well. And it’s a lot easier to be magnanimous in victory.
“But I understand it, they are going for promotion.
“As disappointed as we are, you understand how elated they are.”
McCarthy revealed that Phillips was disappointed to let it past him, and was especially quick to point out just how well he had done in Alex Smithies’ place over the last nine games.
“It’s very cruel and tough for the lads having worked so hard to keep a good team at bay for a good while,” the manager added. “I thought the lads acquitted themselves very well.
“Then just at the very end they get the free-kick and poor old Dillon’s wondering how it happened.
“He did hit it particularly well. It’s just one of those things that happening so I won’t be too hard on Dillon, that’s for sure.
“Dillon’s saying he should have saved it. If he’s saying that then I’m not going to disagree with him, but he did hit it well.
“He saved two penalties a few weeks ago and we were all patting him on the back. I’ve no recriminations with him whatsoever.”
— Jim Conlan Media (@JimConlanMedia) March 13, 2021
Cardiff slipped to seven points off the play-off spots in the Championship table, and will have to pick themselves up quick with the games coming thick and fast and the season’s end around the corner.
Cardiff face Stoke City on Tuesday before the big South Wales derby next weekend.
Fans reacted as Mick McCarthy reveals what caused the mass melee after Cardiff v Watford…
@Hangtenhornet: #adenflint did it to Sierraltha earlier in the game but loses it when it is done to him
@ccfc_harryc: he ran away, so scared
@WFCSean: He ran away to get off the pitch without a second yellow. Flint did it to him earlier in the game so stop crying.
@louorns: Yea I’m sure Sierralta, a man who’s been shot, is scared of Aden Flint
@youdopoo: was just a cheeky thing to do, not like he was gonna stay and get shown a red card like
@hornet1976: He’s South American it’s what they do because they know we always rise to it . As soon as your fella reacted he won . At end of the day he’s just giving it back to you cunts .
@TonyGagliardi4: It was Diego Costa level of shithousery…and we love him for it.
@Charlie05516440: Man dipped out of there quick
@watfordspeak: Fully deserved. Flint was trying to wind him up all game. Bet Sierralta made a point of marking him then for that exact reason. SHITHOUSE GETTING SHITHOUSED
@timcwegener: As McCarthy said , ‘screamed in his face and ran off like a coward’ 😂
@WebbJareth: Look at him run, bless hiding behind his team
@Garycobbing: Pulls his hair and runs away! What next, Kiss chase?
@AdamAstclair: All these lot saying he shat himself are chatting shit he was already on a yellow he got his revenge and ran so he weren’t getting a red stfu
@penhalluk: Love how Pedro steps in as if to say “I don’t know what’s just happened but I want some!”
More reaction came in on the mass melee between Cardiff and Watford players…
@isaacmcc0: Cardiff in the mud x
@wfc_ben: That’s fucking phenomenal isn’t it
@jb_ccfc: Shat it when Flint turned around mind 😂😂
@dan_newman93: Watford FC are shithouses and I love it
@mpcarver_21: Might be my favorite Watford side of all time.
@harryevans03: Ran like Ur own fans when they came down to cardiff not so long ago…
@WatfordFC9: THE KINGGG CHILEAN
@Louis_French1: Top shithousery. Dark arts well in play, take note @TownWatford innocent till the ref sees it.
@wfc_josh: The Chilean Maldini taking the piss 😂😂🤣
@wfc_ben: Sierralta mate I love you🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣
@theeorns: why’s joao even pissed off ahahahaha he’s primetime man