Mackay in dark over Tan talks

Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Cardiff boss Malky Mackay saw his side lose at home to Southampton Cardiff boss Malky Mackay saw his side lose at home to Southampton

Malky Mackay insists he still does not know when he will hold critical talks with owner Vincent Tan which could decide whether he remains as manager of Cardiff.

Mackay watched his side lose 3-0 at home to Southampton on Boxing Day as the Saints claimed a first win in seven games thanks to a double from Jay Rodriguez and a Rickie Lambert strike.

Peter Whittingham had missed a great early chance for the Bluebirds but, aside from a brief rally early in the second half, they were outplayed by their visitors.

The on-field performance added to the sense of off-field discontent caused by the ongoing battle between Mackay and Tan which has put the manager's position in jeopardy.

The lingering uncertainty over Mackay's future, despite a statement from chairman Mehmet Dalman that he would be in charge for the "foreseeable future", fuelled a pre-match protest where a group of supporters voiced their disapproval of Tan's running of the club.

Chants of 'Don't sack Malky Mackay' and 'We'll always be blue' also rang around the stadium during the game.

But the woeful nature of the performance was such that by the full-time whistle not all of the boos from the remaining home fans were for the Malaysian owner, who himself left his seat five minutes before the end.

Mackay revealed earlier this week that Tan had rejected two requests for the duo and Dalman to meet in an attempt to reconcile their differences.

Press Association Sport understands the meeting could take place on Saturday, when the Bluebirds are due to face Sunderland.

But when asked if a date had been set, Mackay said: "Not as far as I'm aware. I've not been told of any meeting. I don't usually talk to him (Tan) on a game day. That's not something that normally happens. I usually speak to other people.

"I was informed we would try to have a meeting but there has been nothing to this point."

The poor performance could not have come at a worse time for the Scot, although he did not believe off-field matters had played a part.

"I'm certainly not going to make any excuses at all as far as that is concerned," he said.

"People can draw their own conclusions. Myself, the staff and the players are fully focused on what we do on a Saturday or any given game day."

And the former Watford boss believes he should be in charge against the Black Cats come Saturday teatime.

"It is something you'll have to ask someone else, if that is the case or not," he said. "But I have belief in my ability to be the manager here and that group of players are working hard for me.

"The staff are working hard and everyone is pulling in that direction right now, so as far as I am concerned that group are competing well in this league. They are not in the bottom three at the moment and they are where they are supposed to be."

While Lambert and Rodriguez got the goals for the visitors, it was Adam Lallana who proved the stand-out player, with his movement and class on the ball proving too much for Cardiff to handle.

It caps a memorable couple of days for the midfielder, who got married on Christmas Eve.

The 25-year-old has been linked with the likes of Manchester United but manager Mauricio Pochettino is confident he can keep him on the south coast.

The Argentinian said: "I think Adam and other players are going to stay with us. There is no pressure to sell them, Adam has said he is happy at Southampton and Southampton have no plans to sell him."

Of Lallana's wedding, he added: "He has had a complete week.

"He trained yesterday, then went off to get married and then went back to training. He did not even have a day off."

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