The identity of the first of these players came as no great surprise – it had been reported earlier in the week that Blackpool’s Dekel Keinan was on his way to Cardiff and there were messageboard postings about him training with the squad at their Vale of Glamorgan base, so the announcement of the permanent signing, on a two and a half year deal, of the Israeli international centreback was expected. Keinan still needs the formal approval of a work permit yet and, almost certainly, won’t be in the squad for today’s, very important, match with Watford- his first appearance in a City shirt will probably come in the game against Reading on 1 February.
As to how good a player we are getting, well, as I mentioned in my piece on the Stoke match, the fact that he played so few games for Blackpool and that they were prepared to let him go so soon after they signed him is hardly reassuring, but on the other hand, he was a regular in the Maccabi Haifa team which competed in the Champions League. With a 100% losing record and no goals scored, Maccabi’s campaign was hardly a success, but only eight goals conceded in their six games reflected well on Keinan and his defensive colleagues – whatever Keinan’s merits though, he is hardly your typical footballer as this interesting article shows.
I was certainly no fan of the Rambo series of films (which I believe has now reached Rambo 49 – the Pension Queue Wars). The second of these films was,seemingly, called Rambo, First Blood Part II and it’s release in 1985 was greeted with absolutely no enthusiasm by yours truly who has never watched it to this day – however, the return of Cardiff City’s very own Rambo has brought about a slightly different reaction on my part!
The first thing to say about Aaron Ramsey’s completely unexpected arrival on loan from Arsenal is that supporters have to be realistic – his horrendous injury at Stoke almost a year ago means that we will not be getting the player who was fast establishing himself as a regular in the Arsenal squad at that time. In saying that though, if we end up with someone who plays half as well as he did in his only appearance at Cardiff City Stadium so far (the game with Scotland in November 2009), then we will definitely have strengthened our squad and, perhaps, the most telling thing about his signing was the reaction of Forest fans to the news that the player they hoped would be returning to them this month was, in fact, going to one of their promotion rivals – let’s just say they weren’t too pleased!
Although there are those who are claiming that Ramsey’s loan will last until the end of the season, the official line is that it is for a month with his first match being against Reading and his seventh, and last, at Hull on 26 February.
Finally, the indications are that this does not signal the end of our transfer business this month – it seems very likely that there will be some players going out on loan (e.g. Aaron Wildig), while, with an announcement due shortly regarding on the injured Chris Riggott’s future at Cardiff, there is still a need for at least one more defender and there are very persistent rumours which suggest that a return to Cardiff for Danny Gabbidon is on the cards.