Off-Field Clarity Allows Full Leicester Focus
Cardiff City are well accustomed to 'massive' games over the past decade after failing in the div 1 play-offs, acheiving promotion via the same route in 2003, successfully avoiding relegation the next season and going on to win at Wembley and book a place in the FA Cup final 2 years ago.
However, there are two games coming up and possibly a third that would dwarf all those previous encounters, making them look like pre-season friendlies in comparison. That's not to take those successes lightly, but the phenomenal power of the Premier League would mean that promotion has such a profound effect on the short to mid-term future of the club - even if we were immediately relegated next season.
A conservative estimation for the financial implications is £60m for reeaching the Premiership. With parachute payments, and equally importantly the increase in prestige and marketability, especially given our new links with the lucrative far east market - our future for the next 10 years could be decided by these next 2 (hopefully 3) games.
It is somewhat surprising that Cardiff City made the play-offs at all. Although we are experienced in the Championship, and have a good squad - there's no doubt hat we have been severly hit by injuries, while off-field uncertainty is never conducive to on-field top form. Couple that with the multitude of ex-Premiership teams in the league (Newcastle, Boro, West Brom, Palace) and those with greater resources than us (QPR, Sheff Utd) and our achievements are all the more impressive.
Thankfully, Cardiff City won a reprieve to the outstanding tax bill today - thanks laregely to the ongoing efforts of Steve Borley and the new asociation with Malaysian Businessman TG. The court case first came to prominence at the back end of 2009 and has been rumbling in the backgroud ever since. Now though, we have firm indication that HMRC are finally satisfied - and the monies will be paid after the EGM called to ratify the new share issue.
Those circumstances allow Cardiff City players, staff and fans to concentrate fully, without distraction on Sunday's trip to face Leicester City at the Walkers' Stadium. Of course a win is preferable, but a draw would also represent a very good opportunity to progress. It's difficult to overestimate the importance of these games, and we must make sure we have a good chance in the home leg.