Date: 19th March 2010 at 3:22pm
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With the mood around Cardiff City Football Club lifteing dramatically in the past week, there is further good news in the pipeline with a number of important players nearing welcome returns to fitness.

The most significant returnee is Joe Ledley with the Welsh International midfielder making excellent progress following double hip surgery. Ledley came of his crutches and is in consultation with specialists to determine when he can resume running. Early indications are that he will, as he always maintained, make it back to fitness just in time for the run-in – late April being most likely. Of course, Ledley’s future is very unclear and he is out-of-contract in the summer. With Peter Ridsdale odds-on to be replaced, Ledley could yet be tempted by a new offer and ambition of any new owners.

Additionally, Captain Mark Hudson is nearing a comeback after a lengthy lay-off while he recovers from ankle surgery. His leadership, experience and centre-back cover could prove important.

Gabor Gyepes is fit for action after resting a back injury, while Peter Whittingham and Steve McPhail are now fully fit. Kevin McNaughton will probably miss the visit of Watford, but is then expected to return and add his steely determination and consistency to our back-line.

Long term absentee Kelvin Etuhu could also be close to a comeback despite missing the vast majority of the season though ankle injuries. The talented forward/ left-sided attacker has barely featured for the Bluebirds – but would offer another option to change things and compete for a starting position. He will return in the next fortnight – though will be short on match fitness.

That leaves just youngster Josh Magennis out for the foreseeable future. However, the energetic and powerful Irishman has also made startling progress after suffering a broken tibula. Cardiff City staff have been impressed by his positive attitude and he hopes to be back in training within too long.

Match fitness remains a concern, but having any other options returning will be a massive filip, especially with some proven Championship players amongst them.