While Kenneth Zohore is Cardiff’s clear first choice striker, it is obvious that the Bluebirds need a new option up front. A rumoured fee of £6 million was spent on Gary Madine in January, but the former Bolton man failed to hit the back of the net once in a Cardiff shirt. It’s hard to see that changing in the Premier League.
Zohore also failed to hit top figures in terms of goals, but his general play was excellent and was key to the side’s performances. That said, he needs better competition. If Cardiff are to survive next year, we need goals.
With that in mind, here are five options Neil Warnock could target this summer.
The free transfer
This just seems like an obvious one. Free agent Abel Hernandez registered eight goals in the Championship last year, but it’s his power that will impress Cardiff fans.
It’s that power – and his ability to lead the line – that would make him the ideal back-up for Kenneth Zohore.
The Welsh option
Sam Vokes is a strange player. In many ways he is underrated – he leads the line well, he is always a threat in the air and he works hard. That said, you always get the feeling that the Welsh striker is playing above his means.
Having joined Wolves in 2011 from Burnley, he has gained solid Premier League experience. Despite scoring just four goals this year, his ten the year before were key for Burnley.
The Welshman has seen his position constantly under threat and with Burnley entering Europe next season, he could fall further down the pecking order. A move to South Wales could suit all parties.
The loan option
Danny Ings has been plagued with injuries since joining Liverpool in 2015. Despite a number of setbacks, Ings has worked hard to fight his way into Jurgen Klopp’s plans. The German will want more reliable players if he is to challenge for the Premier League title and with just eight games under his belt last season, Ings could be sent out on loan for game time.
If so, Cardiff should fight their way to the front of the queue. Ings is fast, powerful and knows how to find the net. In his debut Premier League season, Ings hit 11 goals for Burnley in their first season in the Premier League.
The Under the radar signing
If you’d said a couple of years ago that Jackson Martinez would sign for Cardiff, you’d be laughed at. The Colombian was one of Europe’s hottest strikers, hitting 67 goals in three years for Porto. Moves to Atletico Madrid and then China followed, but Martinez struggled to hit the heights he reached in Portugal. As a result, he now finds himself a free agent.
If Cardiff could convince Martinez to rebuild his reputation in South Wales, then they could have one of Europe’s biggest coups on their hand.
It’s a long shot, but it’s one worth considering.
The star signings
He’s already been linked in the media, and it’s easy to see why Neil Warnock would be interested in Salomon Rondon. The Venezuelan has been one of the Premier League’s most dangerous strikers in recent years, despite featuring for a struggling West Brom side.
His presence up front is enough to strike fear into Premier League defenders and would be the perfect striker to challenge Kenneth Zohore for a starting spot.
Cardiff may not be willing to pay more than £10 million for him, though, which could prove a stumbling block.
Scott is a lifelong Cardiff City fan and freelance football writer. Scott hosts the VFTN podcast.