' Injured Cardiff City stars' return dates '

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' Injured Cardiff City stars' return dates '

Postby Forever Blue » Wed Aug 14, 2019 1:43 pm

Injured Cardiff City stars' return dates and the big selection posers Neil Warnock is faced with
Some key players are set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines


By Glen Williams


Wednesday 14th August 2018



Cardiff City have been hit with a number of injuries to key players over the past few months, but Neil Warnock has reinforced accordingly in the transfer window.

Though some players are sidelined with niggles and illness, others find themselves facing arduous rehabilitation before they are deemed fit enough to force themselves back into the first-team reckoning.








Neil Etheridge

Warnock confirmed the worst last week when he revealed his number one goalkeeper had sustained a grade three hamstring tear, the worst you can have, during the opening-day defeat by Wigan.

Retaining Etheridge's services despite long-standing interest from newly-promoted Premier League side Aston Villa was a huge boost for Warnock, but Cardiff were quickly brought back down to earth by his injury.

Joe Day replaced the Philippines international against Wigan and shipped two goals, subsequently losing his place to Alex Smithies last weekend.

Smithies, on his league debut for the Bluebirds, put in an assured display against the Hatters and it could well have gone a long way to securing the number one spot for the foreseeable future.

Expected return : October

Does he come back in? Yes









Sol Bamba

Bamba was consigned to the physio table back in March after he was carried off on a stretcher during the Premier League defeat by Wolves.

The 34-year-old Ivory Coast international underwent surgery after a nasty injury to his ACL and is working his way back to full fitness, however he is still some way off challenging for a first-team spot again.

Bruno Manga's exit threatened to further destabilise the defence, but Aden Flint looks like an incredibly shrewed acquisition. On the little evidence we have so far, Flint has proved a giant at both ends of the pitch and has arguably been the best overall performer in the opening two games.

He has partnered captain Sean Morrison in the heart of defence and the pair have struck up quite the partnership. If the Morrison-Flint axis continues to flourish it could prove difficult for Bamba to force his way back in.

Will Warnock drop the in-form man or the skipper for his star centre back? Will he perhaps deploy him in a deep-lying role in midfield as has been the case in the past? At this stage, it is difficult to say, but nevertheless it's a nice headache for the manager to have.

Expected return : October

Does he come back in? Jury's out










Jazz Richards

Warnock revealed Richards is about a month away from full fitness after sustaining an injury during pre-season. The Wales international has had a rotten run of injuries since joining Cardiff in 2016, which has now seen him miss 45 games in three years.

Richards, when fit, provides ample back up for Lee Peltier at right back, however incumbent has really made that spot his own.

Expected return : September

Does he come back in? No













Matt Connolly

Warnock revealed last week that Connolly actually underwent surgery on his ankle during pre-season, which is likely to keep him out for another couple of months.

It also rules out a potential move away as he is unlikely to be fit before the windows close in Scotland, the lower divisions in England and Europe.

Connolly has helped the Bluebirds to two Premier League promotions, but has been used sparingly the last few seasons and while his versatility is always a useful asset, it is highly unlikely he will oust any of the first-choice defenders.

Expected return : October

Does he come back in? No













Lee Tomlin

Tomlin has not featured in the match-day squads for each of the opening two Championship games this season. The playmaker had toiled away over the summer in a bid to slim down and prove his fitness to Warnock ahead of the season, posting a photo of his visibly-improved physique .

Warnock attributes his lack of game time to a bout of gastroenteritis — we are likely to know more about his return date in the manager's pre-Reading press conference — however there are still questions over whether the player will seal a move away before the end of the month.

While the exit of Bobby Reid looked likely to have opened a door for Tomlin in behind the strikers, Warnock appears to favour the industrious Callum Paterson.

Whether the manager will use Tomlin as a different option if Cardiff are chasing the game or the player departs for a new challenge, it is highly improbable he will slot straight into the team when he returns.


Expected return : Unknown

Does he come back in? No











Nathaniel Mendez-Laing

Last week rumours emerged of Nathaniel Mendez-Laing limping with his right thigh heavily strapped. While nothing was confirmed, once he was omitted from the squad to face Luton it seemed to corroborate the reports.

Again we are likely to know more when Warnock speaks ahead of the Reading game, but Cardiff fans will hope the injury isn't serious and he will have made a full recovery.


Gavin Whyte was given the nod on the right wing against Luton and, although he showed plenty of endeavour and industry, he did not showcase the pace and strength of Mendez-Laing, which can strike fear into many an opposition defence.

Expected return : Unknown

Does he come back in? Yes
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