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Neil Warnock Claims Agents May Have Used Emiliano Sala Disappearance To Hike Prices

Neil Warnock has claimed some of those negotiating on behalf of his transfer targets may have been using the Emiliano Sala circumstances to drive up their prices.

The Cardiff City manager has insisted he is happy enough with the one major deal the club managed on transfer deadline day – the move to bring in midfielder Leandro Bacuna from Reading.

But Warnock said other talks broke down over fees and wages he suggested may have been driven upwards by those seeking to exploit the situation.

“Overall, that’s probably as good a window as we expected with the targets we achieved and the circumstances,” said Warnock.

“We could probably have done with another one but we weren’t going to have a gun put to our head.

“For one lad abroad the sort of finances were talking, you’d have thought the lad was playing for his country regularly. We had to pull the plug on a couple of deals.

“The terms changed every other day and it was astronomical in the end. Whether they were pushing on our circumstances, I don’t know. I spoke to Mehmet (Dalman) and Ken (Choo) and we weren’t going to have a gun put to our head.”

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Warnock faces his first home game tomorrow – against Bournemouth – since Sala, his major £15m signing of the window, went missing somewhere in the English Channel along with the former Nantes player’s pilot.

Tributes to both men are planned at the Cardiff City Stadium, but the effects of the tragedy have been widely felt and Warnock revealed some of his potential recruits had been put off joining.

“One or two of the strikers we were talking about didn’t really want to come in on the circumstances. They didn’t want to come in after what’s happened. So it’s been a very difficult window.

“Once we get this weekend out the way and we can move on, we have to regroup.

“We have to come up with a formula to get points on the board. People will write us off and quite rightly so.

“Other clubs have players like (Solomon) Rondon and (Alexander) Mitrovic, doing what they are doing, but we don’t have one of them, really.

“So it is more difficult for us… we have to make our own luck now and really have a go.

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“This year I thought it would be a great accolade to stay in the division.

“Even now, it is still probably by a mile (a big challenge), when you look at the circumstances.

“It is not all about money. It is about getting a group of lads to believe in what they are doing and moving mountains again.

“We keep getting knocks and blows, but we keep bouncing back. If it isn’t good enough, it won’t be for the lack of trying.”

“We broke our transfer record, so I couldn’t ask any more from the club and we worked really hard from that. 

“But we’ve got to work hard now. I got Oumar and Bacuna and I probably wanted three transfers, but we’ve got to get over that and show we’re not a spent force. The lads have got to stand up.”

Bacuna could well come straight into the team to face Bournemouth tomorrow, with fitness doubts still surrounding Victor Camarasa.

Either way, Warnock – who also brought in young striker Danny Williams, 18, from Haverfordwest – believes Bacuna will prove a success.

“Bacuna is a player I really worked hard on, I was determined to get something like that over the line,” he said.

“I think he will be a fan favourite here long after I have gone.”


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