Cardiff midfielder Don Cowie hoping to beat Blackburn to lift Wales spirits in wake of Gary Speed's death

The playmaker says he was shocked and numb when he heard that the manager had died on Sunday, and feels a win for his team may be able to give some sort of relief

Don Cowie is hoping his Cardiff team-mates can lift the spirits of a whole nation when they play Blackburn in the League Cup quarter-finals on Tuesday.

Wales remains in a state of shock and mourning since the news broke of national boss Gary Speed’s death.

The Bluebirds come up against the Premier League's bottom side as they compete for a place in the last four. Cowie believes a Cardiff victory in front of a big home crowd can go some way to raising the country’s mood.

The midfielder told the Express: “When I was told after training on Sunday, I was numb and shocked. I didn’t know him but my thoughts are with his family.

“Hopefully we can make it through to the semi-finals and give everyone’s spirits a lift.”

Cardiff are one of the Championship’s in-form sides and have not lost for eight games, including victory over a resurgent Nottingham Forest at the weekend.

Cowie wants the team to push on and capitalise on Steve Kean's side's poor spell, adding: “Blackburn are in a sticky spell and they will come here looking for a win to kick-start their season. But we have to make sure that doesn’t happen.

“We have been on a good run recently and we’re confident. We will concentrate on ourselves and hopefully we can do the job.”

Blackburn boss Kean is hoping to just keep his job as protestors are set to strike again to force him out of the club.

He said: “The way to make progress is to win games.

“Cardiff is going to be a tough tie but we think we can reach the semi-finals. Can we win the Carling Cup? Why not? Once you’re in the semi-finals anything can happen.”

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