With two pieces already covering the managerial situation this week, this is going to be a summary long on speculation and short on fact as attention turns to the signing of the urgently required new players needed to get our squad numbers up to normal Championship levels. However, before concentrating on the playing side, it is worth mentioning a few things regarding the make up of Malky Mackay’s back up staff at Cardiff. Firstly, when asked about it at this press conference on Friday he said that there will be a mixture of old and new amongst those who will work under him. Sean Dyche the Assistant Manager at Watford is thought to be a possible target for City (he’s in the running for the vacant manager’s post at Vicarage Road mind), while a possible departure from Cardiff could be Academy manager Neil Ardley who has also been mentioned as a contender for the top job at Watford – I think that there may well be developments in these matters during the upcoming week both at Cardiff and Watford.
In saying that mind, the news that Malky Mackay interrupted his family holiday to finalise his move to Cardiff suggests that he flew back out to Italy again once his business in South Wales was done and so I suppose it’s possible that we will be in a state of limbo again during the upcoming week as far as recruiting new back room staff and players is concerned. I doubt this will be the case though, more likely to me is that a list of names has been given to Gethin Jenkins and it will be his job to try and cobble together agreements for those targets.
On the playing front, there have been a few names mentioned this week and, surely, there will be far more in the days to come. Even before the Mackay appointment, Talksport were linking us and Ipswich with former Blackburn and Birmingham striker Matt Derbyshire and the way that Robert Earnshaw (who was finally offered a new deal by Forest this week) was talking up our new manager in midweek didn’t go unnoticed (there are persistent rumours linking Earnie with a return home). Inevitably, there has been talk of Malky Mackay going back to his old club to snap up some of his former players with right sided midfielder Don Cowie, central midfielder John Eustace, utility defender/midfielder Adrian Mariappa and even England squad goalkeeper Scott Loach all being mentioned, but a move for soon to be out of contract Middlesbrough left sided defender or midfield player Andrew Taylor (who spent most of the first half of last season on loan at Watford) seems more likely to me.
Finally, there is also speculation linking us with Dundee United winger Craig Conway whose contract runs out at the end of this month – Conway (who was mentioned as a possible City target back in January) was heavily linked with Watford before Malky Mackay left (as shown by this story last March). However, things have moved on since then – Conway is seemingly a target for a host of Championship clubs with, from memory, Hull, Palace, Leicester and Leeds all being mentioned. Not only that, Conway’s representatives met with Rangers officials last week to discuss a proposed transfer and so, a deal being agreed for the twice capped Scottish winger appears to be something of a long shot at the moment.
It’s pure speculation on my part but out of the names mentioned above, Andrew Taylor, Earnie and, possibly, Don Cowie (who is in the last year of his contract at Watford) seem to me to be the ones that have the strongest ring of truth to them as likely Cardiff targets and, possibly, one or more of them might be City players by the time I do my next weekly review – we really do need a few players in before the squad returns for pre season training in around ten days time.