Recently by Scott Johnson
When all is said and done, it seems likely that Mark Hudson and David Marshall will receive the plaudits for the current campaign and rightfully so. But as the season progresses, I believe Matthew Connolly is beginning to emerge as a credible contender for Cardiff City player of the year consideration.
I admit, when he first arrived, I was not initially impressed. Tall, thin and pale, he looked like he had crawled from his sickbed to make his debut at Bristol City, less than 48 hours after signing for the club. His subsequent performance was underwhelming, as Cardiff were thumped 4-2.
Seemingly lightweight and positionally suspect, an outlay of £500,000 looked misguided. Fortunately, he has since more than justified the expenditure and has proven to be one of Malky's most astute signings.
Malky Mackay's 'treat them mean, keep them keen' approach has been working wonders, but there have been casualties along the way. As Robert Earnshaw slips out of the back door, overshadowed by the name change controversy, he is the latest victim of the Glaswegian's hard-line approach.
I recently interviewed Anthony Gerrard with regards to his time at Cardiff. He is still disappointed at missing out on two Wembley finals, but he was more aggrieved at the treatment he received from Mackay. I was asked by Huddersfield to omit his comments, ahead of the two sides meeting a few days later, a request I reluctantly agreed to. The following day, the Huddersfield Examiner ran similar comments which were widely circulated and resulted in Mackay denying Gerrard's claims.
In this section of the interview, Gerrard claimed: "I was treated like a joey to be honest. The way he spoke to me on the training ground, being put down, I don't think you should speak to people like that. A few of us were treated unfairly in my eyes to be honest." The other players in question presumably being the likes of Dekel Keinan, Paul Quinn and Jon Parkin, frozen out of the first team set up at the time. After the indulgences of the Dave Jones era, Mackay's drive and ambition was always likely to ruffle a few feathers.
With the team doing so well, opposition to the rebrand has been largely dormant recently. Not any more.
Vincent Tan's scarf giveaway has presented disgruntled fans with the perfect opportunity to reiterate that they remain against playing in red and would also oppose any of his future whims.
With huge shirt and ticket sales, Tan would be forgiven for thinking that his changes have been embraced and accepted, hopefully Tuesday night will demonstrate otherwise.
On the eve of a massive game for former Bluebird Anthony Gerrard, our blogger Scott Johnson spoke to the tough tackling defender about his time in South Wales.
It's easy to understand why Anthony Gerrard regards his time at Cardiff as "frustrating." In his first season with the club, he played 46 times but missed out on the play offs. His pairing with Darcy Blake was blossoming and many still believe that Blackpool would have been successfully navigated had Gerrard remained fit. "To be honest with you, it's all ifs, buts and maybes," Gerrard counters when I make the suggestion.
"I had a calf strain, I missed the two semi's and was expecting to play in the final but I ended up sitting on the bench, which was very disappointing. I was fit enough to play."
Ahead of the following season, Gerrard was shipped out on loan to Hull, with Seyi Olofinjana moving in the opposite direction. The move was never really explained at the time, allowing rumour and speculation to fester. "I had a bit of a mental hangover from the disappointment of not playing in the play off final," Gerrard recalls.
Malky Mackay appears to be in the market for a right back and Kevin McNaughton is out of contract in the summer, with no sign of a forthcoming offer. It doesn't look good for Super Kev.
A firm fan favourite, although maybe not as firm as a couple of years ago, McNaughton has experienced plenty of highs and lows in his 270 games for the club.
He has been at the forefront of Cardiff's pursuit of top-flight football and in his seventh season with the club, they may finally achieve that goal, with McNaughton on the periphery.