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Cardiff’s business in the summer transfer window is completed

Neil Warnock has managed to recruit six players this summer in preparation for Cardiff’s first season back in the Premier League, four of which came at the start of pre-season. Camarasa & Arter have signed on transfer deadline day as Warnock sought other options to bring in central midfielders, following a failure to sign Marko Grujic from Liverpool.

Transfers in:

Player Transfer fee Previous club Position
Greg Cunningham £4m Preston North End Left back
Josh Murphy £11m Norwich City Winger
Bobby Reid £10m Bristol City Forward
Alex Smithies £3m (rising to 3.5m) QPR Goalkeeper
Victor Camarasa Season-long loan Real Betis Centre midfield
Harry Arter Season-long loan AFC Bournemouth Centre midfield

A quick look at all of the new signings:

Greg Cunningham

preston-north-end-v-reading-sky-bet-championship-deepdale-8-310x415 Aged 27, 6ft, Irish international

Previous clubs include Preston, Bristol City, Nottingham Forest, Leicester City & Manchester City

A reliable left back who has been one of the most consistent players in the Championship for the past 3 years, offering strong competition to Joe Bennett for a first team place.

He hasn’t played for the Republic of Ireland since 2013 but a continuation of his quality at Premier League level will surely be enough to earn him a call up.

Josh Murphy

Josh+Murphy+Norwich+City+v+Leeds+United+1XuZOdOHAcHl Aged 23, 5ft8, former England U20 international

A pacy, skilful winger with a keen eye for goal, Murphy bagged 11 goals and 3 assists for Norwich last year.

His twin brother, Jacob Murphy, is also a professional footballer who plays as a winger. They played together at Norwich for four years before Jacob moved to Newcastle in 2017.

Josh has played a season in the Premier League once before, in the 2013/14 season, the same year Cardiff were relegated. Norwich were also relegated the same year.

Bobby Reid

Bobby+Reid+Bristol+City+v+FC+Twente+Pre+Season+-2JGZgp-5ukl.jpg Aged 25, 5ft7, English born

Bobby has spent most of his career at Bristol City as well going out on loan to Cheltenham and Oldham, before 3 different loan spells at Plymouth.

He was one of the best strikers in the Championship last season, scoring 19 league goals in 46 games. He also netted 2 goals for Bristol City in the League Cup. They got to the semi-final, eventually losing to Man City over two legs.

He was named in the Championship team of the year, along with Sol Bamba.

As well as playing as a striker, he is also capable of playing at the tip of the midfield diamond in the no.10 role.

Alex Smithies

Smithies_QPR_Leeds Aged 28, 6ft1, former England U19 international

He’s only played for two different clubs in his career so far, Huddersfield and QPR.

Smithies has been linked to a number of Premier League clubs throughout his career, but this season will be his first chance to play at the top level.

He kept 7 clean sheets in 43 games for QPR last year, averaging 2.16 saves per game. His average claim success was 95%. Comparing to Etheridge who made 2.09 saves per game and had a 97% average claim success rate. He will be eager to battle for the no.1 spot with Etheridge.

Victor Camarasa

6ndwqST Aged 24, 6ft, former Spain U21 international

He signs from La Liga outfit Real Betis on a season-long loan. He has also played for Levante and Alaves.

Camarasa is a box-to-box midfielder who will bring more physicality to the current midfield.

He was on the bench against Cardiff last week in their final pre-season friendly but did not make an appearance due to playing against Bournemouth the previous day.

He has played with the likes of Marco Asensio, Hector Bellerin and Gerard Deulofeu for Spain’s U21 team.

Harry Arter

harry-arter-bournemouth-football-player-a Aged 28, 5ft10, Irish international

Arter has spent the last 8 years of his career at Bournemouth, as well as spells at Carlisle, Charlton, Woking, Staines and Welling. He joins Cardiff on a season-long loan.

He can play as a holding midfield player, with strong attributes in tackling and passing.

Although he didn’t feature much for Bournemouth last season, he has been a Premier League regular since their first season at the top in 2015.

Arter will be vital in Cardiff’s bid to stay up this season, offering Warnock a good option for the defensive role in midfield.

Cardiff’s squad list looks like this:
Goalkeepers: Neil Etheridge, Alex Smithies, Brian Murphy

Central defenders: Sean Morrison, Sol Bamba, Bruno Ecuele Manga, Matt Connolly

Full backs: Lee Peltier, Jazz Richards, Greg Cunningham, Joe Bennett

Central midfielders: Joe Ralls, Aron Gunnarsson, Loic Damour, Victor Camarasa, Harry Arter, Callum Paterson, Lee Tomlin, Stuart O’Keefe

Wingers: Josh Murphy, Nathaniel Mendez-Laing, Junior Hoilett, Kadeem Harris

Forwards: Kenneth Zohore, Bobby Reid, Danny Ward, Gary Madine, Anthony Pilkington, Rhys Healey

Four of those players have to be cut from the list to finalise Cardiff’s 25 man Premier League squad, and it would be likely be four of the following:
Rhys Healey, Stuart O’Keefe, Matt Connolly, Anthony Pilkington, Lee Tomlin, Kadeem Harris.

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What midfielders could become Cardiff City players by Deadline Day?

1. Andy King


A Premier League winner, a European Championship semi-finalist, 47 caps at senior international level and 94 Premier League appearances for Leicester and Swansea. 

It must be agreed that Andy King’s career on paper is very impressive for any professional footballer. However, he has found himself surplus to requirements for Leicester City, featuring only 11 times last season before being loaned out to help Swansea battle relegation from the top division. Swansea were unable to avoid the drop and King is now back at Leicester, looking extremely unlikely to feature in their side this year.

He would offer Cardiff versatility in midfield, be able to play as a no.10 having done so for most of his career for Leicester, as well as a deeper role as he done for Wales in the recent Euro and World Cup qualifying campaigns.

King would likely be a much cheaper option than most midfielders with his experience and wouldn’t demand crazy wages that Cardiff couldn’t pay.


2. Ryan Woods


An incredibly intelligent midfielder that could no doubt make the big step up to the Premier League.

Ryan Woods has already racked up 206 league appearances for Shrewsbury and Brentford by the age of 24 in a career that has spanned just 6 seasons. Just over half of these games have come at Championship level.

He can play in a variety of positions across midfield because his wide range of attributes allow him to hold that flexibility. A great passer, strong tackler with a near-perfect sense of positioning  in midfield.

Brentford would likely demand a transfer fee of £10 million+ for Woods this summer and currently Swansea are favourites to sign him.


3. Alfred N’Diaye


The tough tackling central midfielder that Cardiff are desperate for in their bid to stay up this season.

He was instrumental in Wolves’ promotion to the Premier League last season and spent the summer playing for Senegal at the World Cup. He would no doubt provide much needed competition to Aron Gunnarsson and Loic Damour.

Neil Warnock has already publicly stated his interest in N’Diaye when Grujic became unavailable to sign.

“We have spoken to the club involved but I think the package is a bit beyond us,” Warnock said of N’Diaye.

Even still, if no other option becomes available Cardiff might have to increase the budget in a desperate attempt to bring in some more quality.


4. Scott McTominay


McTominay could be a potential season-long loan option from Manchester United after breaking into their first team last season, as well as debuting for the Scottish national team. 

I’m not sure how likely he could be to sign for anyone on loan this season, but looking at the options Man Utd have in midfield (Pogba, Fred, Pereira, Matic, Fellaini, Herrera, Mata) you would think McTominay is currently bottom of the central midfield pecking order.

He lacks experience at the highest level but showed glimpses of fantastic quality last season. He stands at 6″4, has a good first touch and is strong on the ball. He can play as a box-to-box midfielder or a holder that breaks up play. He would also provide an aerial threat at set pieces, something Cardiff will definitely look to exploit this year.


5. Daniel Amartey


A hard-working, strong midfielder eager to find his feet in the top division. 

Like Andy King, Amartey has found himself behind a number of central players at Leicester and could be another one to make a move away from the King Power Stadium before the deadline next week. An international for Ghana with 22 caps, he can also play at right back.

He has only played 37 Premier League games for Leicester since joining in January 2016, the same year Leicester won the title. He featured 5 times in the 15/16 league winning season. Amartey was massively hyped as being the successor to Kante after he left for Chelsea but things haven’t quite ended up that way.

His work rate can’t be doubted, he has just lacked quality in some areas (interceptions, key passes), which is often why he has found himself on the bench.

A loan would probably do all parties some good if Cardiff are still looking for midfield competition next week.