Cardiff City Boss Erol Bulut Keen For More Talks With Aaron Ramsey

Cardiff City manager Erol Bulut. Pic: Cardiff City FC

Cardiff City Boss Erol Bulut Keen For More Talks With Aaron Ramsey

By Matthew Burgess

New Cardiff City manager Erol Bulut hopes to soon meet Aaron Ramsey after declaring himself happy enough with his team’s pre-season progress so far.

The new Bluebirds boss was left encouraged by his side’s application in a 2-0 victory against well-drilled Cymru Premier outfit Penybont in Bulut’s first match in charge.

Cardiff are rebuilding and that could yet involve Wales captain Ramsey, with the Turkish manager keen to discuss a move back to the club for Ramsey, a closing of the circle to where he began his career.

Former Chelsea striker Ike Ugbo is understood to be a target but speculation continues to Ramsey with a return to the club.

Ramsey is now a free agent and attended the Vale on Friday, but Bulut insists he has only previously met Ramsey in person once – at the Wales v Armenia game – but hopes to share further developments on transfers next week.

“Maybe I’m going to meet him following this. We will see, we never know.”

“I will tell you more next week if we can get to sign some players, so then you will know,” he added.

There was little evidence to suggest how the Turkish coach’s revamp of the Bluebirds might look this season following a low-key victory on their opening pre-season outing.

Tasked with resurrecting the club’s fortunes following a season of upheaval, Bulut has had just two weeks to work with his players prior to hosting Penybont in the first of a double-header against opponents from the Cymru Premier that kicks-off their pre-season schedule.

Goals either side of half-time from Mark McGuinness and Ollie Tanner wrapped a comfortable win as Penybont were given a thorough examination of their capabilities, ahead of their UEFA Conference League debut in 11 days’ time.

“I’m satisfied that the team are doing well. They are training hard, but only for ten days, so we have to be better for the following games,” said Bulut.

“It was good that I could see the young players and what they have, especially in the second-half. They did quite well, so I could see today that they want it.”

Naming a strong starting line-up containing a host of first-team regulars, Bulut observed his Cardiff side predictably dominate for extended periods as their superiority quickly told.

Less predictable, however, was the scoreline, with the Bluebirds only managing a goal in each half as they eased themselves to victory.

Kion Etete was the Bluebirds’ stand-out performer, with the young forward looking sharp as Penybont struggled to contain him.

It was his low shot that was tipped around the post and allowed McGuiness to head home from the resulting corner inside the opening 15 minutes.

The goal set the tone for Cardiff who relentlessly pressured Penybont yet somehow found themselves unable to add to their lead.

It was not until the second half, when the Bluebirds made wholesale changes for the restart, and fielded a far lesser experienced line-up, did the pressure on Penybont ease, although the Cymru Premier side remained a distant second best.

Still trailing by the single goal, Chris Venables poked a shot narrowly past the post as Penybont threatened to claw an unlikely equaliser from the contest, in what proved to be their best attempt of the game.

Penybont’s resistance forced Cardiff to wait for their second, with half-time substitute Tanner nodding in Kieron Evans’ delivery to the back post, ten minutes from time to wrap up a deserved win.

“In the first-half, the team had played together last season more often, but the second-half had many young players. Kieron Evans impressed me, but also other players did well. Joel Colwill is doing well at the age of 18 and Xavier Benjamin as well,” said Bulut.

“Of course, we have to work on a lot of things, in the defensive part, in the offensive part. Of course, details are not exactly how they have to be, but that’s why we have a lot of games.”

Welsh champions The New Saints visit Cardiff City Stadium on Tuesday as part of a pre-season programme that will see the Bluebirds take in games against Braga and FC Porto as they continue their preparations in Portugal.

Despite defeat, Penybont boss Rhys Griffiths will take heart from a performance that saw his side maintain their composure throughout, and that level of resistance should hopefully not be required against Anorrans FC Santa Coomba in 11 days’ time.

Penybont were tidy in possession in parts and generally composed with the ball, despite the gulf in standard between the two teams.

Griffiths will be encouraged that his side rarely looked overawed despite being pulled apart and made to chase Cardiff.

The Bluebirds squad is still very much in a rebuilding phase with the club confirming Mark Harris has left as a free agent, whilst academy graduate Joel Bagan has penned a new three-year deal with the club.

 

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