Solskjaer denies claims of punishing players

Cardiff manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has denied he is punishing his under-performing players by cancelling their warm-weather trip to Abu Dhabi.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer manager of Cardiff City celeb

The Bluebirds had been scheduled to fly out on Sunday to allow them time to train in the sunshine and freshen up before they go to fifth-placed Tottenham next weekend.

But after watching his charges thrashed 4-0 by Hull City - the club's biggest home defeat since losing by the same scoreline to Cambridge United 14 years ago - Solskjaer changed his mind in favour of some intensive domestic preparation.

"We are not going away," the Norwegian revealed.

"We are staying here. I cancelled it after the game.

"It is not punishment. We want to keep everyone together as a group. We need to regroup and to train."

In their first Barclays Premier League season, the Bluebirds sit 19th in the table, with 11 games left to scramble to survival.

They had numerous chances against the Tigers, but for the third league game in a row they drew a blank.

The visitors were happy to soak up the pressure and repeatedly punished them on the break.

A brace from Croatian marksman Nikica Jelavic and goals from midfielders Tom Huddlestone and Jake Livermore - who is on loan from Spurs - gave Steve Bruce's men their biggest away win in the top flight.

Former Molde boss Solskjaer could draw only a few positives from the thrashing.

"You can always try to find positives, but it is not easy when you lose 4-0," he said. "You can look at the shots and possession we had, but it is about scoring goals and keeping them out at the other end. We didn't do that."

The Bluebirds have won only three times in 10 matches since Solskjaer took over last month, following the controversial sacking of Malky MacKay.

But the placid former Manchester United star said the poor run has not eaten away at his self confidence.

"It's fine, definitely," he said. "If I am trying to change everything in my own beliefs, that won't help anyone.

"We are going to work hard this week, stick together and maybe because of the extra day we now have, we will have one or two extra sessions as well."

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