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Cardiff City transfer headlines as starlet says Man United education helping him thrive and Will Vaulks pulls no punches over season

Here’s your round-up of all the latest Cardiff City headlines for Sunday, May 1.

Denham’s Man United lessons helping to fuel promotion dream

Oliver Denham insists Steve Morison can guide Cardiff City to the top six next season, and says his own background at Manchester United has helped him hit the ground running in the Championship.

The youngster has made a hugely positive impression in the capital since an assured first senior start at Anfield in the FA Cup back in February. He has since gone on to make four Championship starts, including the final home game of the season against Birmingham City on Saturday.

The Bluebirds are facing a summer of mass upheaval, with 10 players out of contract and five loanees set to return to parent clubs. Morison has already suggested that he’s already more or less agreed the details around a couple of incomings. You can read his full update following the draw with the Blues here.

READ MORE: Leeds United’s Cody Drameh named Cardiff City player of the season as Rubin Colwill picks up two awards

However, despite all the expected new arrivals, Denham is clearly hopeful of continuing his progress, under a manager he’s worked with closely since under-23s level. Speaking after Saturday’s draw, he said: “I know what he [Morison] wants from me and what I need to give him to impress him. That relationship has definitely helped me.

“It will be interesting to see who he brings in and how we go about challenging to try and get promotion. It’s exciting to see what happens. We have tried to implement a new style of play, trying to play out from the back and then creating chances. You can definitely the changes he is trying to bring in.”

While he’s arguably the latest of several promising youngster to come through the ranks, Denham actually started out at Manchester United, before moving to south Wales in 2020. And he clearly believes that his early education at Old Trafford has helped him quickly adapt to the rigours of senior football.

“My background at Manchester United has definitely helped me with that part of the game. Coming here now, and playing men’s football, is now helping me develop the other side of my game. It’s all coming together.”

Cardiff boss Morison has promised there will be cause for excitement in the upcoming transfer window, and Denham similarly believes there’s plenty of cause for optimism. “I definitely feel we can push for the play-offs and promotion next season,” the 19-year-old continued. “We have got the players to do that and I’m sure whoever he brings in can add to that and help us got there.”

Morison not thinking about top-six challenge – yet

Meanwhile, Morison admits that promotion back to the Premier League remains a long-term goal for Cardiff, but has stopped short of suggesting that its an aim for next season.

Keeping Cardiff away from relegation was clearly the main brief for Morison when he took over from Mick McCarthy earlier in the campaign, but the current circumstances clearly make it trickier to put such a clearly defined target in place ahead of next season. Then again, he admits there will always be some level of yearning for a top-six charge.

“My brief is to do a lot better than this season,” Morison said when quizzed on his ambitions for the new season. “It’s to work to a structure and a budget.

“But it’s a difficult one to answer because there is my vision and there is the club’s. The club’s ultimately is always going to be, ‘let’s get promoted.’ That should be the vision for all of us.

“The only time you really have a target is when you have a situation like when I came in, with a few months to go and the target was to get safe. Everyone next season will start off with that ambition. If you’re at the lower end of the table, budget-wise, everyone will want to emulate Luton. They’ll think, ‘why can’t we do it?’

“But there will be teams coming down and teams at the top who are going to be thinking they should be getting promoted. I would love to get promoted, or get to the play-offs. I just want to produce a team that can carry out the job. I also want everyone to enjoy watching the team play and enjoy coming to the stadium.”

Vaulks – we have to do better

Will Vaulks admits Cardiff’s fans have deserved far more from their team this season, but says there’s plenty of reason to believe there will be something to shout about next season.

Saturday saw Cardiff fans click through the turnstiles of Cardiff City Stadium for the final time this term, having watched their side turn in what many would consider to be a disappointing campaign. That said, the upturn in form under Steve Morison and a reasonably successful January window, were enough to stave off any threat of relegation and, perhaps, offer some hope that the club is moving in the right direction.

Nevertheless, Vaulks believes the club haven’t done nearly enough to reward the loyalty of fans, who have turned in strong support at home and away all season. “The fans have been brilliant,” the Wales international told the club’s official website.

“They’ve been patient with us when we haven’t been good enough this year. We haven’t given them enough to cheer about, but they turn out in their numbers and support us. The following away from home is different class; every game, no matter how far away it is there’s loads of people there, and they clap us off and support us.”

Vaulks netted Cardiff’s first penalty of the season in the draw with Birmingham, but still faces an uncertain future given that he’s one of ten first team players out of contract at the end of the season. Nevertheless, the midfielder hopes that the club can improve on this term’s showing, whatever happens. He added: “It’s a great club with a great fanbase, and we should be doing better like I said than it has been this year, but clubs have ups and downs, and the only way is up now, really.”

Bennett wins promotion

Cardiff may well welcome back a familiar face next season, after Joe Bennett celebrated promotion to the Championship with Wigan Athletic at the weekend.

Former Bluebirds star Bennett made over 150 appearances for City before his release in 2021. The left-back then signed on with the League One Latics later that summer.

The left-back played just 11 times for Wigan this season, but appears to be enjoying life at the DW Stadium. On celebrating promotion, he simply tweeted: “What a 12 months. What a club”.

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