A win for City today would have heaped pressure on Norwich, playing later at Fratton Park.
Instead, City succumbed without even a whimper, 3-0 at home to a team lying 16th. Expectations were massive ahead of this match, with most fans still believing that the Bluebirds could clinch the 2nd automatic promotion spot.
All those expectations disappeared inside 3 minutes, as a long cross saw Leroy Lita outjump McNaughton to head back across Heaton into the corner for 1-0.
Worse was to follow 10 minutes later when Robosn made it 2-0 after more poor defending, and on 21 minutes the score was 3-0 when another poor defensive error saw Smallwood nick in at the near post.
By then, City were dead and buried. Heads were down, and though I hate to say it, they deserved to be behind. They couldn't pass, they were second to everything, when they did get the ball instead of playing the football we know they can they were just hoofing long balls up the field. It was a truly, truly abject display by virtually every single City player.
The second half saw Blake on for McPhail, and eventually, Chopra for Quinn, but despite almost all the second period possession, they could hardly muster a shot on goal.
City really know how to bottle the big occasion, and boy did they bottle this one. It's the worst home performance I've seen all season, just when they needed a good one.
Here's a tweeted account by a lad I sit next to, who's quite astute, and incidentally a ref. (@pearcey147).
Thought the whole team was utterly crap today, didn't look interested at all and couldn't have scored if we had played for a month.
Back four missed Hudson badly. Keinan lost his head, Samuel was being destroyed by Lita briefly and Kev is too short to be centre-back.
Olofinjana can't control the football, McPhail was non-existent, Burke was off the pace and Whitts and Koumas kept playing long balls.
Bellamy was trying to force it too much and can't cross the ball at all, whilst Bothroyd looked totally disinterested and was shit.
The referee was crap, thought we were playing basketball, was throwing cards around and the male lino didn't know the offside rule.
Jones should've gone in December, didn't pick Hudson for some reason, changed the setup about 5 times and has no motivational skills.
I'm gutted. Really gutted. And yes, the referee was crap.Appallingly so - talk about comedy officiating. Needs to learn the rules. Handball for one. Can't be offside from a throw for another.
Norwich will go up if the beat Pompey today, and I can't see them not doing that. Jones might have done a lot for City, but he can't get the best out of them in pressure games.
So it looks like playoffs again. I said I didn't want to go through the heartache of playoff again, but I'll take it now. But if we play like this, we'll be out of them in a hurry.
Of course, if QPR get deducted points we may still go up automatically, though we still need to beat Burnley, but that's just clutching at straws, and I wouldn't want to go up that way. Probably....
Saw a tweet from someone I follow suggesting City fans hadn't helped by booing their side. Well excuse me. I pay good money to come and watch 11 highly paid men kick a bag of wind about. When they play well, I'm entitled to clap and cheer. When they play like they did today, I'm entitled to my opinions that they were crap.
If I had a cat I'd kick it. Wait I minute, I have.....here puss.........
No I wouldn't kick the cat, but if you're a football fan, and particularly one of the almost 25,000 City fans who were there today to watch that debacle, you'll know how I'm feeling tonight.