Their play-off hopes ended in misery for the second year running a couple of weeks ago. That time, Dave Jones managed to keep his job for another season on the premise he would guide Cardiff to the Premier League next time around. This time, though, Welshman Jones has not been so lucky as he finds himself out of a job after the Bluebirds decided to axe him.
This news will most likely heighten relegated West Ham United’s interested in the manager after they sacked Avram Grant following the side’s drop from the Premier League. Jones had already been rumoured to have been a target for the Hammers’ owners. These rumours will now most likely escalate as Jones seeks employment.
Cardiff City supporters may be shocked by this announcement. Jones, who led the club to the FA Cup final only 3 years ago, had managed to keep Cardiff in the automatic promotion place behind leaders QPR for most of the season. The club’s form slipped in the latter stages of the season though and they relinquished their automatic promotion spot to Norwich City.
Ultimately, the end of Jones’ tenure with the club was provoked by Cardiff’s miserable play-off semi-final result against Reading, who contest the Championship play-off final this afternoon. The Welsh club, despite drawing 0-0 away at the Madejski Stadium, could not reach the play-off showpiece at Wembley as they disappointingly lost 3-0 at home in the return leg.
This summer looks set to be an important period for the Welsh club. First-team players such as Jay Bothroyd have been released and it looks likely Craig Bellamy will not repeat his cameo loan spell at the club as he attracts potential interest from the Premier League. Cardiff fans now face a summer of uncertain speculation about the identity of the manager who will – hopefully – lead Cardiff to the promotion they have been craving for many seasons now.
With the doubt surrounding the Cardiff City stadium, though, a promotion next season does not look too probable at this present moment.