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Dalman and Malky a double act key to the future of City; As the dust finally begins to settle following a turbulent week at Cardiff City, TERRY PHILLIPS explains why the club's new chairman could prove more important than anyone imagined.

Byline: TERRY PHILLIPS

MEHMET Dalman has already proved to be an astute chairman for Cardiff City.

He was appointed only two and a half months ago, but has proved himself in a calm, measured way, by averting a serious rift between manager Malky Mackay and owner Vincent Tan.

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While others seemed unsure how to react to the fall-out following the departure of Iain Moody, Mackay's right-hand man and head of recruitment, Dalman maintained dialogue with Mackay and Tan.

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There is more work still to be done, but the chairman is working towards a final solution which will benefit all parties. It seems clear experienced businessman Dalman pressed for the inclusion of a clause in the official statement released by City on Tuesday night that left nobody in any doubt that Mackay has the final say on all signings.

Without that, the situation would have remained unstable, perhaps even untenable, for the manager.

Those few words in the statement went further than any other factor in ensuring any fears Mackay had were eased.

Mackay has not had a close ally outside of his football staff since former chief executive Alan Whiteley left the club. The two men worked exceptionally well together and that was to the benefit of Cardiff City.

However it now looks as though Dalman and Mackay can build a similar rapport. That bond between Dalman, born in Paphos, Cyprus, and Scot Mackay is a relationship which will be a key factor to the club's bid to achieve Premier League survival.

Former Crystal Palace trialist Dalman has taken a far more hands-on role to help steer City through a crisis. There were fears Mackay could even be on his way out as the row rumbled on, but there is now a new calm.

Mackay's future - in the short-term at least - with City is now assured thanks to the work of Dalman before, during and following a five and a half hour board meeting this week.

Mackay, Dalman and Tan will meet when Tan returns to Britain in a couple of weeks - and that's when they will thrash out any finer details that remain outstanding.

The position of City's acting head of recruitment Alisher Apsalyamov meanwhile was scrutinised during the board meeting.

He remains with Cardiff City, but Tan has accepted, in the club's statement yesterday, that Mackay is the man finally in charge of all transfers.

Dalman, crucially, understands football.

He was a young player at Palace before deciding education and business would be the course to follow. That proved sound thinking as he built a good career as an investment banker and became a businessman with interests worldwide.

He helped the Glazers in their takeover of Manchester United . Dalman studied at the London School of Economics, speaks English and Japanese and has a working knowledge of Greek and Arabic.

It was always crucial that the furore surrounding Cardiff City over the last couple of weeks calmed down as they prepare for this Saturday's Premier League clash with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Dalman has been the key figure, alongside Mackay and Tan in ensuring the Bluebirds can spend the last few days before their clash with Jose Mourinho and his team without being distracted by events outside of football.

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Oct 17, 2013
Words:561
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