The next few weeks and months are going to be manic at Cardiff City. The Bluebirds are putting all their ducks in a row as they look to build a squad practically from scratch ahead of next season.
City are looking to sign at least 10, potentially as many as 15, players in the off-season, depending on how many players leave. While the majority of those transfers will be permanent, they hope they will be able to fill all five loan slots as they did in the recent January window.
The summer presents a far better opportunity to plan and get the players you want. Considering the January window is notoriously difficult to navigate, Cardiff’s work in the winter was terrific. They hope to do even better business this summer.
READ MORE: Cardiff City keen on Forest Green Rovers midfielder
Cardiff have meetings with Premier League giants Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea all planned in the coming weeks, which you can read more about here. They want the top emerging talents to come to Cardiff City Stadium next term, while the top-flight teams are keen to offload many youngsters to see how they deal with the rigours of Championship football.
Cardiff’s relationship with clubs and their ability to develop loan players will have bettered over the last few months. Manchester City are understood to be impressed with how they have handled Tommy Doyle and would have few doubts over sending their next budding talent to the Welsh capital next season.
Cody Drameh has also showed what he is all about during his few short months on loan from Leeds United, the performances of both have turned the heads of clubs such as Bournemouth at the top end of the Championship.
But what about next season? Well, Cardiff need bolstering in all areas of their squad. They need players all across the defence, all areas of midfield, on the wing and up front. So, which emerging talents are these top clubs keen to let out on loan next term? We sought the expert insight from out colleagues at Manchester Evening News and football.london to see who could be leaving this summer…
Shola Shoretire (winger) – One of United’s most promising talents. The 18-year-old has made four first-team appearances in total but the Old Trafford club want to give him a full season out on loan. Has six goals in 22 appearances for the club’s under-23s in the Premier League 2 this season.
Zidane Iqbal (midfielder) – The 18-year-old can play as a conventional centre-mid or in a more advanced role. Has two caps for the Iraq national team under his belt already. Made his first-team debut in the Champions League against Young Boys in December.
Joe Hugill (striker) – Another 18-year-old, the striker has two goals in eight games for United’s under-23s this term.
Charlie McNeill (striker) – Signed from rivals Manchester City, for whom he scored more than 600 goals at youth level between 2014-20. At 18, he is tipped as one of next crop to burst through into the first team. Has six goals in 14 games for the under-23s and looks set for a good season out on loan. Scored 24 goals in 21 games in his first season for United’s under-18s last year.
Alvaro Fernandez (left-back) – He had interest from League One and the Championship in January and has only got better since. The 19-year-old Spain youth international was signed by United from Real Madrid in 2020.
Yangel Herrera (midfielder) – A 24-year-old, deep-lying midfielder. Seems to be what Cardiff are after, on paper. Is yet to make an appearance for Man City, despite signing in 2017. Herrera, who has 24 caps for Venezuela, has enjoyed loans at New York City, Huesca, Granada and Espanyol, where he currently plays. City want to see him tested in England next.
Filip Stevanovic (winger) – A 19-year-old winger and Serbia youth international. Has also never featured for City, having been loaned back to his former club Partizan before playing in Holland with Heerenveen this season. Has two goals and an assist for the Dutch club.
Marlos Moreno (winger) – A winger who, at 25 and after six years with City, has also never made an appearance for his parent club. Has had loans with Deportivo La Coruña, Girona, Flamengo, Santos Laguna, Portimonense and Lommel. This season, though, he is with KV Kortrijk, which is owned by none other than Vincent Tan. That might be a swaying factor. Has eight caps for Colombia.
Pedro Porro (right-back) – The 22-year-old is currently on a two-year loan deal with Portuguese top-flight outfit Sporting CP, where he has impressed. He has eight goals in 68 appearances and appears to fit the bill for Cardiff, that’s for sure. Was capped by Spain last year and might want to show what he can do in England next season, having never played for the Etihad club.
Miguel Azeez (midfielder) – The 19-year-old central midfielder was sent on loan to Portsmouth this season, but was recalled in January due to a lack of playing time. He has two goals in 10 games for the young Gunners this term and is a regular England youth international. Has a senior Europa League appearance to his name.
Mika Biereth (striker) – The 18-year-old forward joined Arsenal from Fulham last year and has been mightily impressive. Has scored 13 goals in 26 games for Arsenal under-23s in the Premier League 2 this term, a tally bettered only by Folarin Balogun at Arsenal.
Brooke Norton-Cuffy (right-back) – Can operate at right-back or left-back, but more comfortable on the right. An England youth international who has spent this season on loan at Lincoln City. Arsenal want another loan for the 18-year-old next season further up the football pyramid.
Omar Rekik (centre-back) – The 20-year-old defender has had a nomadic career, counting Feyenoord, Man City, PSV, Marseille and Hertha BSC among his former clubs. The Tunisia international will want a season of senior football under his belt now, no doubt. He could be one who wants a loan next term.
Henry Lawrence (right-back) – He is incredibly versatile, can pretty much play anywhere in defence or on either flank. The 20-year-old is enjoying a positive season on loan in League One with Wimbledon and will be eyeing a step up next year.
Harvey Vale (midfielder) – An 18-year-old attacking midfielder and England youth international. It is thought he would have to sign a new deal before being allowed to leave on loan as Chelsea won’t want him to go with only a year left on his contract. Has trained almost exclusively with the first team in recent months but with no game time to show for it. Has five goals for the under-23s.
Mason Burstow (striker) – The forward, 18, was signed from Charlton in January but hasn’t linked up with Chelsea yet. He will turn 19 in August and Chelsea may want to test him in the Championship. Has six goals in 23 appearances for the Addicks this term.
Dylan Williams (left-back) – The defender was signed from Derby County back in January and has trained with Chelsea’s senior squad since. At 18, the club will likely want him out playing senior football next season.