It is ten months since Sheffield United and Norwich City – both newly promoted from the Championship – were linked with Will Vaulks.
At the time Vaulks was playing for Rotherham United; who had just been relegated to League One.
Cardiff City, Derby County and Sheffield Wednesday were also credited with having interest in the midfielder. But the Blades and Norwich apparently led the way for his signature.
After all, they could offer Premier League football having finished second and first respectively in the table.
Despite Rotherham’s relegation, Vaulks had impressed during two years in the second tier of English football. A defensively-minded midfielder, the Wales international had shown his eye for goal in 2018/19 with eight league strikes.
The Blades were in the market for midfield players. They were yet to sign the likes of Mo Besic, Luke Freeman or Ben Osborn. But despite leaving the New York Stadium last summer, Vaulks never did join them. Or Norwich.
What happened to Sheffield United’s Championship target?
There was some accuracy in the original report, as Vaulks made the switch to Cardiff. He’d entered the final year of his contract with Rotherham and shown himself to be more than capable in the Championship. So the Bluebirds were moved to pay around £2.1m (BBC) for the Welshman.
On a busy day for Cardiff, Vaulks was one of three new signings. He immediately made a sly dig at rivals Swansea City upon his arrival.
“It’s great to be playing for the biggest club in Wales just six months after my first international call up,” he told the club’s official website.
Having just been relegated from the Premier League themselves, the Welsh side were being tipped by some to bounce straight back. With nine matches remaining and Neil Harris having replaced Neil Warnock as manager, they are ninth currently and two points off the playoffs.
Vaulks initially struggled to make much an impact, but now started the Bluebirds’ last nine league games.