Promoted Cardiff ready to raid lowly Reading and QPR
With Cardiff’s place in the Premier League next term assured, Malky Mackay has already begun preparations for his side’s first top-flight campaign in more than 50 years.
And to begin with, he is believed to have targeted players from two clubs with far less certain futures in England’s elite league.
Indeed, hopeful of bolstering his attacking ranks, Mackay has turned his attentions to Reading and QPR, with Adam Le Fondre and Bobby Zamora prominent on his wishlist.
Moneybags City owner Vincent Tan has promised his promotion-winning manager £25m to spend this summer, with the Bluebirds chief assuring fans he won’t go gung-ho with the funds.
And this notion is solidified by his interest in this pair, who are both likely to be available for a knockdown fee if, as expected, their clubs suffer relegation this term.
The likelihood of them doing so is highlighted by Reading’s 1/500 odds for the drop, and QPR’s 1/150 price to suffer the same fate, so an instant return to the top flight would be an appealing prospect for each player.
Despite making more substitute appearances than starts over the course of the season, 26-year-old Le Fondre remains the Royals’ top scorer with 12 strikes this term.
But as his goalscoring exploits have failed to win him more regular starting recognition, he would appear ready to call time on his Madejski Stadium career should an offer from Wales materialise.
And the former Rotherham poacher could find the perfect foil as a strike partner in Zamora, who has been plagued by injury woes at Loftus Road this season.
Now 32, the former England international is keen to keep playing at the highest level for as long as possible, and his playing style would appear to perfectly complement the plethora of attacking talent already at Mackay’s disposal.
The likes of Fraizer Campbell and Joe Mason would benefit from partnering with the physical striker, as well as the aforementioned Le Fondre, should his switch from Reading come to fruition.
One of the Rs’ current top earners, owner Tony Fernandes could welcome the chance to free up significant wages by letting Zamora go in the close season.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.