Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 27 December 2014

Mackay given Tan backing

Vincent Tan, left, has backed Malky Mackay, right, to lead Cardiff in the Premier League this season
Vincent Tan, left, has backed Malky Mackay, right, to lead Cardiff in the Premier League this season

Cardiff owner Vincent Tan has given Malky Mackay his public backing despite appearing to undermine the manager's position by replacing his head of recruitment with someone who has no apparent experience in football.

The Bluebirds confirmed on Friday that Iain Moody, one of Mackay's most trusted aides since their time together at Watford, had left his post permanently, having been placed on gardening leave earlier this week.

They also confirmed 23-year-old Kazakhstani Alisher Apsalyamov as Moody's replacement on an interim basis.

Apsalyamov is thought to be a friend of Tan's son and appears to have no previous experience in football.

The loss of Moody had placed Mackay's position under scrutiny but Press Association Sport understands the Scot has no intention of resigning, and the club have denied reports Mackay was asked to leave his post.

Tan said in a club statement: "I have every faith in Malky and his team to lead us through the challenges of the Premier League. I have supported him in the past and will do so in the future for many years to come.

"I would say to all Cardiff City fans and everyone connected to the club, let us look forward to the future and remain united in our support of the team."

The statement went on to thank Moody for his work for the club. Mackay has publicly praised his former colleague's diligence in helping bring the likes of Steven Caulker, Gary Medel and Fraizer Campbell to the club.

"Cardiff City football club can announce the departure of head of recruitment, Iain Moody," the statement read. "Iain is leaving the club with our thanks for his contribution.

"In the interim period, Alisher Apsalyamov has been appointed as acting head of recruitment, focusing on gathering data on individual players. Ultimate recruitment decisions of course remain the domain of the manager and majority shareholder."

There was no explanation of the reasons for Moody's removal, although it is believed Tan felt the club had overspent during the summer transfer window.

Press Association Sport understands the Cardiff board are due to meet on Monday as the club attempt to plot a forward path after recent upheaval, including a row, now resolved, over player bonuses.

Chief executive Simon Lim is expected to attend, but it is understood Tan will not be present.

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