For the first time, there will be two Welsh teams playing in England’s top flight, as Cardiff City joins fierce rival Swansea City in the Premier League next season after gaining promotion on
Tuesday. A 0-0 draw at home to Charlton Athletic was enough for Cardiff to secure automatic promotion to the EPL for the first time in club history, ending a 51-year wait to return to the top flight.
Fans will be especially relieved that the Bluebirds don’t have to enter the Championship playoffs, given the club’s record of having failed in its last three successive attempts.
"It's been a long time coming and we're here now,” Cardiff coach Malky Mackay said. "It's not sunk in, there's a lot of smiley happy faces and it's going to be a long night in Cardiff.”
As recently as 2001, the club was mired in England’s Division Three. It has since withstood two changes in ownership and serious financial difficulties, while somehow managing to stave off several “winding-up,” or liquidation, orders, the most recent of which came in 2010. Nevertheless, Mackay, who took over as coach in 2011, believes all those troubles are finally in the club’s past. "There's a lot of people here that have gone through a lot of hard times. This is for them," he said.
Meanwhile, Malaysian businessman Vincent Tran, who is the club’s owner, has said Cardiff will look to spend around $38 million on new recruits this summer in preparation for life in the EPL next season.