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Wales Online
Glen Williams

Erol Bulut lays out exactly how he will use precocious Cardiff City talent Rubin Colwill in exciting plan

One of the many encouraging facets of pre-season so far, from a Cardiff City standpoint, is seeing the freedom which has been afforded to Rubin Colwill by Erol Bulut.

The Wales international has drifted all over the pitch in recent seasons under numerous managers, being asked to play in midfield or even stuck out on the wing on occasion.

But there is little doubt among the Bluebirds fan base that the 21-year-old is at his devastating best roaming in and around that No.10 position, picking the ball up on the half-turn and making things happen. Steve Morison's theory, for example, was that Colwill was a devastating player in transition, but needed to offer more.

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Well, with another season of football under his belt and a good pre-season in terms of fitness and playing for Wales under-21s, the playmaker looks to be playing with real confidence and enriching City's attack. Indeed, his link-up play with wingers Ollie Tanner and Kieron Evans has been a real hallmark of his game this summer, while his burgeoning relationship with Callum Robinson can only be a positive.

Importantly, Bulut has seen that Colwill can impact the game in an attacking sense and with the new boss placing so much emphasis on creating more chances and scoring more goals this season, it is only natural to expect the Bluebirds academy product to have a greater say on proceedings if that is indeed the ultimate goal.

No one else, perhaps Robinson aside, within the Bluebirds squad has such a natural ability to create and manipulate the ball in the way Colwill does.

He is a precocious talent, of course, but it would be remiss not to mention his lack of consistency since bursting on to the scene. There are many factors at play as to why that is, changing manager, changing positions and, more pertinently, being hamstrung by a litany of injuries.

Now, though, injury free, touch wood, and with a pre-season under a new manager who appears to value him under way, Colwill could represent something akin to a new signing this term. And where Bulut plans to use him will also excite City supporters.

"Rubin is a good player with good technique. He can play number 10, he can play wide, he can play as a number eight," Bulut began. "In our system, how we want to play, he will be like a second striker, not like a winger, we want to see it more in the middle of the field because of his technique and quality.

"I think he can do it well and this will be his position. I am happy with how he has been doing until now. He is a young player and will make mistakes, but he will be much, much better in the following weeks."

There is a hope that this can be the campaign in which he really lights up the Championship. After showing so much promise, he knows it's time to deliver on a far more consistent basis in the upcoming 12 months. He certainly has the talent, he just needs a touch of luck on the injury front and a manager who believes in him and gives him the role he is so desperate to play.

Looking at the facts; playing as an attacking midfielder or second striker, Colwill has four goals for the Bluebirds. Compare that to all the other positions in which he has played and he has not scored a single goal since his his double against Nottingham Forest, his first two strikes for the club, in September 2021.

Encouragingly, Bulut sees what the lion's share of fans see; a playmaker who needs to be given free rein among the strikers and wingers to score and create. The early signs - and it must be conceded that it is still very early - are encouraging.

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