Being a Cardiff City fan,you tend to get used to certain drawbacks of supporting such a club. Almost instantly, chants about relations with sheep at every away game becomes ‘the norm’ and a defeat against Preston and Peterborough is all but an inevitability. But something I have never had to familiarise myself with, is such negativity around the club before a ball has even been kicked.
The owner is out and about trying to buy a club in each European country, skilful winger Sammy Ameobi has just been signed as a target-man and the majority of our fans would rather watch Wales every week and Cardiff about six times a year.
In the past seven years, Cardiff have reached the FA Cup Final, League Cup Final and the Play-Off Final. We’ve even won the league and got relegated. However, since the appointment of Russell Slade, the club is stuck between a rock and a hard place. We are not good enough to challenge for promotion, but we are not quite bad enough to go down either. Hopefully.
In fairness to Slade, he is having to clean up a mess made by previous manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. He is having to try and sell all the big earners and replace them with better, but cheaper options, in front of an ever-increasingly bored fan base. However hard his job is though, doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be doing better.
Cardiff have only made two signings so far this summer. Sammy Ameobi (6″4) and Semi Ajayi (6″4). The numbers in brackets are a clue as to what style of play we will be playing this season.
The frustrating thing is, is that Cardiff do have the makings of a decent enough squad. David Marshall, Bruno Manga and Peter Whittingham are all capable of being top quality Championship players every game but the negativity around the Cardiff City Stadium is getting worse.
The club are on the verge of losing three strikers. Adam Le Fondre is pining for a move back up North, Kenwyne Jones is on the verge of a move to the MLS and Javi Guerra is tipped to go back to Malaga. It isn’t hard to see why fans are getting disheartened when we are selling players of this calibre, whilst our scouts are probably at Forest Green Rovers searching for adequate replacements.
The Bluebirds and their fans are paying the price for owner after owner throwing money at the club to try and get in the Premier League. A feat we achieved but only for one season. It never was sustainable. With Vincent Tan now owning three clubs, money has had to be shortened, especially considering Cardiff are in a reported £180m worth of debt.
It says a lot that even after that mad-man turning us back to blue, the positivity is as far from Cardiff City as it has been in recent times. It is a massive contrast to the togetherness we had under Malky Mackay. Never have I seen a manger just grab a club and drag everyone in the same direction as much as Mackay did. The polar opposite can be said about Russell Slade.The owner and fans don’t get along, the manager and the fans are frustrated with each other, but the manager-owner relationship is strong, that’s the problem.
The lack of signings, the awful style of football and the fact that Slade couldn’t get a six-year-old excited for Christmas points to the fact that this could be one of the most forgetful seasons in Cardiff City’s history.
Obviously I hope to be wrong, but I just cannot see it. The only thing that is certain is that we will beat Leeds home and away, again.