Cardiff City tried and failed to sign George Puscas before the Romania striker joined Championship rivals Reading for £8m.

Former Cardiff City boss Neil Warnock has admitted to the EFL on Quest that he tried and failed to sign George Puscas for the South Wales outfit before the striker joined Reading instead.

With the likes of Nicolo Zaniolo, Fabian Ruiz, Dani Olmo, Tammy Abraham and Aaron Wan-Bissaka heading to Italy for last summer’s U21 European Championships, few expected that the tournaments biggest breakthrough star would be a number nine from Romania.

Puscas produced a series of performances befitting of his Hungarian namesake as an un-fancied Romania side reached the semi-finals, helping to knock England out in the group stage before running Germany’s defence ragged in the final four.

And, just a few weeks later, a bullish centre-forward compared to a young Alan Shearer was on his way to England.

Reading won the race, paying a hefty £8 million for a one-time Inter Milan starlet, leaving Warnock disappointed.

“I went after Puscas last year,” the veteran tactician said after Puscas helped Reading beat Birmingham 3-1 at St Andrews.

With nine goals in 29 Championship games, the 23-year-old has enjoyed a mixed debut season at the Madejski.

But, considering that Cardiff’s top scoring striker Robert Glatzel has just four to his name, Warnock must be tempted whether signing Puscas would have helped to keep him in the Bluebirds hot seat for another few months.

In other news, Confirmed Arsenal v Wolves lineups tonight: Luiz starts, Nelson only on the bench