This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Cardiff City manager Neil Harris is looking to add some depth to his defensive options, with the Bluebirds interested in a move for Rennes’ full-back Souleyman Doumbia, who is desperate to leave the club this January, as he is unhappy with a lack of game time at the Ligue 1 side, according to French media outlet L’Equipe.
The 23-year old full-back only joined the French club back in January 2019, making the move from Swiss side Grasshoppers but things have never really worked out, with Doumbia playing just seven games for Rennes since moving to North-West France, with only one of them coming this season.
So would Doumbia be a good signing for Cardiff and is he actually needed?
“This would be an intriguing signing for Cardiff to make during the transfer window, and Neil Harris’ side could be in need of adding to their options at full-back, having allowed Armand Traore to leave the club.
“Doumbia is a player with a lot of potential to develop and at 23-years-old is the right sort of age where Cardiff could develop his game over the next few seasons, but he has not really been featuring for Rennes in Ligue 1 so far this term, which could be a slight concern.
“The defender clearly needs to get away from Rennes and get some regular game time elsewhere during the second half of the campaign, and he could offer some competition for Joe Bennett at left-back as Harris looks to get his side challenging for the play-offs.
“Cardiff might be better served looking for someone with more of a guarantee of being able to come straight into the side, rather than bringing in a player like Doumbia who would potentially take time to adapt in English football.”
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“This could turn out to be a shrewd addition by Cardiff if they can convince Doumbia to join the club this month.
“Although the defender has failed to make any inroads on Rennes’ starting eleven this season, he could potentially provide some much-needed cover at the back for the Bluebirds.
“Whilst Joe Bennett has been an ever-present for Cardiff this season at full-back, it could be argued the arrival of Doumbia may allow him to take his game to new heights in the coming months.
“If Doumbia is able to hit the ground running in the Championship, there is no reason why he cannot help the Bluebirds achieve a relative amount of success between now and the end of the 2019/20 campaign.”
“I think that Doumbia could be a really useful addition for Cardiff if they manage to fight off interest from the likes of Angers and Utrecht for his signature.
“You’d have to say that the only position Cardiff are lacking in bodies is the full-back areas, with Joe Benntt currently their only out-and-out left-back at the moment, although Greg Cunningham could also play there once he returns from a lengthy injury..
“Whilst Doumbia is a full-back, he can also operate in midfield, so he would be a very useful addition in that sense as it gives Neil Harris plenty of options to consider in the second-half of the season.
“He is at a really good age and has decent pedigree having come through the ranks at Paris Saint Germain, so there is no reason to suggest why he couldn’t be a success if he made the move to South Wales.”