May 26, 2024

Cardiff City facing injury crisis with seven players in race to be fit for Leeds United clash

The Bluebirds have a number of injury concerns heading into next weekend

The wait for the 2023/24 Championship campaign is nearly over with Cardiff City set to travel to Elland Road next weekend. The Bluebirds were among the division’s strugglers last season and new manager Erol Bulut will take charge of his first competitive match against Leeds United on Sunday.

However, it could prove to be a baptism of fire with as many as seven players a doubt for the trip to Yorkshire next weekend. Captain Joe Ralls was taken off early against Porto midway through July and has not featured since.

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New arrival Yakou Meite also missed the game against the Portuguese champions, having played just 45 minutes of action in pre-season, with those minutes coming against Braga. He’s a major doubt to face Daniel Farke’s men.

Reliable centre-back Mark McGuinness was left out of the Bluebirds 0-0 draw with Wycombe Wanderers, with Bulut’s side short of options in the heart of defence. “He had a small kick on his knee in the last game, that’s why we didn’t want to risk him,” Bulut told Wales Online.

“Also, Joe Ralls, he had a small pain on his leg. We haven’t taken them to the game in order for them to not risk a big injury. Yakou, too.”

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When asked if McGuinness was going to be available for Sunday, Bulut replied: “I think yes.”

Rubin Colwill also missed the trio to Adams Park but the Cardiff boss is hopeful he’ll return to face Leeds. “Rubin feels stiffness in his muscle and we didn’t want to risk it,” Bulut said. “Next week, Tuesday, for training, everyone will be included.”

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Romaine Sawyers is another absentee who has not featured in any of Bulut’s eight pre-season games and is unlikely to feature on Sunday. “He had with the national team. He played until July 3 and we gave him some rest,” Bulut said of Sawyers.

“He had a small knee injury from the games there, but he will also be at training next week.”

Ryan Allsop was taken off against Wycombe in an unplanned substitution with the severity of his injury not yet known, while Callum Robinson also appeared to complain about an injury towards the end of the match.

 

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