The Bluebirds will play five of the Premier League’s ‘top six’ heavyweights in September and October
Cardiff City manager Neil Warnock has joked he will face a fight to keep his job this season after the new 2018/19 Premier League fixtures were announced on Thursday.
The Bluebirds, back in the top flight after finishing second in the Championship last term, have been handed a relatively kind start – away at Bournemouth, and then Newcastle United at home before a trip to Huddesfield Town.
But the Welsh side then face a nightmare run of games in September and October, where they will play five of the Premier League’s ‘top six’ clubs.
And Warnock, whose promotion with Cardiff was a record eighth of his career, admits he will have his work cut out for him this term.
Reacting to the newly-released fixtures on Thursday’s Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast, the veteran boss said: “We’ve got Arsenal at home, Chelsea away and then Man City at home in September – it’s a great league isn’t it?
“Then in October we’ve got Tottenham away, Fulham at home and Liverpool away – it’ll be about, ‘can I last ‘till Christmas?’
“I’ve just been over to Malaysia, I went to see my owner to talk about next season and what we’re looking it.
“When I left I said to the staff there, ‘I hope I see you next year, but you know what’s like this managerial job!’”
Warnock admits it would take a miracle to save Cardiff from relegation, given their lack of financial resources compared with their new rivals.
However, the Bluebirds boss insists there is more than enough spirit in the team to give them a fighting chance.
“We all know how difficult it’s going to be, but all the lads are looking forward to it,” he added.
“We’ve got to try and enjoy it.
“I know it’s alright me saying that when we’re coming up against these huge teams, and it would be a miracle [to stay up].
“We’re rock bottom with the bookies and our wage bill is going to be just over half of Huddersfield’s, and it’s the same with transfers, so we’re going to be up against it.
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“But we’ve got great spirit in this team. We’ve got some great characters in the dressing room and I know we’re not easy on the eye, but we play a lot more than people give us credit for.
“We’ve got one or two decent players and if we bring four or five more into the squad we’ll give teams a good game.
“But we’re going to need to be fortunate injuries, because we can’t afford our best players to get injured really.”