Cardiff City completed their pre-season preparations in an entertaining 3-3 draw with Bundesliga’s VfL Wolfsburg at the Cardiff City Stadium on the same day midfielders Gary Medel and Jordon Mutch were reported to be set to exit the Welsh club.
Local and national media reports on Saturday claimed Serie A giants Inter Milan had finally met the Bluebirds’ £10 million asking price for Chile’s World Cup star Medel; while QPR were reported to have had a £5 million approach for ex-England U21 international Mutch knocked back, but QPR are expected to return with an improved bid.
Neither played any part in the visit of Wolfsburg, who began the friendly the better side and took an early lead after some tentative Cardiff defending.
Vieirinha was allowed the freedom to cross from the right and Matt Connolly failed to deal with it, managing only to scuff his clearance to Marcel Schafer, who nodded in from close range.
Cardiff got themselves back into the game, cheered on by more than 8,000 supporters, and created chances for both Nicky Maynard and Adam Le Fondre, with Austrian midfielder Guido Burgstaller at the heart of both moves. After Le Fondre lifted the ball over the bar from Burgstaller’s cross on 26 minutes, Wolfsburg hit Cardiff with a sucker punch.
A long ball from the restart to ex-Chelsea midfielder Kevin de Bruyne found the Belgian with the freedom to push forward unopposed from his own half and unleash an unstoppable 25-yard shot past Cardiff’s captain on the day David Marshall.
By half time the Bluebirds had dragged themselves level: through Peter Whittingham’s free kick and then Maynard’s short range finish after good work by Fabio down the left hand flank. Early in the second half the turnaround was completed when South Korean midfielder Kim B-Kyung tapped in after a Kenwyne Jones’ header came back off the post.
The Championship club had opportunities to seal the win through Le Fondre and Jones, but Croatian international Ivica Olic ensured the match was drawn with a well-taken finish past substitute goalkeeper Simon Moore in the final ten minutes.
With the pre-season at an end Cardiff boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer must turn his attention to the season’s opener away to Blackburn next Friday. Midfielder Kim limped out of the game and is a possible doubt, Medel and Mutch look certain to leave, so Solskjaer may consider his options and there were reports post-match of a further four signings to be announced before the season’s curtain raiser.
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