LATEST NEWS : This season was something of a novelty for Cardiff City – an entire campaign without

This season was unusual for Cardiff City in that they did not change managers for the full season.

Erol Bulut became the first Bluebirds manager to complete a full season since Neil Warnock managed the 2018-19 season, which culminated with relegation from the Premier League.

So the most surprising aspect of Bulut’s first season in command is the relative stability he has brought to such a troubled team.

Then there is the significant improvement he has implemented.

Cardiff had battled to avoid relegation twice before Bulut took over, but with the former Fenerbahce manager in charge, they ended a comfortable 12th in the Championship.

Despite this, Cardiff is mired in uncertainty.

Bulut still hasn’t signed a new deal. Despite publicly and repeatedly expressing his wish to extend his one-year contract, the 49-year-old is still unsure whether he will be in command next season.

Cardiff has finally begun negotiations with Bulut, but as the talks drag on, they will enter the summer with more questions than answers once more.
What went right?

Simply put, Cardiff’s most notable development this season has been in terms of outcomes.

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Bulut is a pragmatist who prioritizes results over everything else, and while he wants his squad to play a certain style, nothing is more important than the final score.

With that in mind, Bulut fostered in his team a sense of conviction and tenacity, allowing them to score points even when they were not performing well.

Former Birmingham manager Wayne Rooney provided an astute appraisal, stating, “Cardiff are a team who stay in games and try to nick three points.”

That was clear when Cardiff staged many spectacular late comebacks throughout the season to secure improbable victories over Ipswich Town, Southampton, and Preston North End.

Wins over Ipswich and Southampton also helped to improve the team’s home record. After only six victories at Cardiff City Stadium in 2022-23, the Bluebirds have won ten times this season.

Bulut has also established a bond with the club’s supporters that few of his predecessors have had. He is a dynamic guy who frequently attends supporters’ gatherings and is well-known for his candor with the media.

And winning the first South Wales derby against arch rivals Swansea City since 2021 undoubtedly helped.
What exactly went wrong?

Cardiff has improved significantly under Bulut, although performances and results have remained erratic.

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That much is obvious when you consider that only three Championship clubs finished this season with a worse goal difference than the Bluebirds’ -17.

They only drew five games out of 46, winning 19 and losing 22.

Although there were some notable successes, there were also some horrible performances and outcomes.

A run of one win in eight games in January and February included poor performances such as a 3-0 home defeat by Leeds United, and the 2-0 derby loss at Swansea in March may have been the worst of them all.

Cardiff were sometimes lackluster in attack, scoring only 53 league goals all season, which contributed significantly to their poor performances.

Bulut’s cause will not have been helped by the fact that many of his team’s weakest performances occurred at home.

They were dreadfully flat at times, forcing several fans to express their dissatisfaction with the manner.

Of play. What will they need this summer?
First and foremost, Cardiff must decide how to handle Bulut’s future.

He is said to be seeking reassurance that he will be allowed money to spend during what is expected to be another hectic transfer season.

Last year, a transfer embargo limited Cardiff’s ability to sign players to free transfers or loans, but the block was lifted for the January window.

This summer, the squad will undergo another overhaul, with several players leaving as their contracts or loans expire.

Karlan Grant, Nat Phillips, Josh Bowler, and Josh Wilson-Esbrand will be replaced after their loans expire, while Jamilu Collins, Famara Diedhiou, and Romaine Sawyers are also out of contract.

Bulut will be eager to improve his offensive options, with a focus on acquiring a proven goalscorer and adding pace to wide forward positions.

The defence is pretty stable, but with right-back and player of the season Perry Ng garnering interest from Premier League clubs, Cardiff will aim to retain their most prized assets.

Cardiff has a critical summer ahead of them. Bulut has delivered much-needed stability, but his future remains uncertain.

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