IT’S likely that most people do not realise that Lee Tomlin and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing have a shared history that precedes them both joining Cardiff in the summer.
It certainly did not dawn on me until recently and it’s certainly a period worth recounting.
This will actually be the pair’s fourth season playing at the same club.
Both joined The Posh in the summer of 2010; Tomlin a permanent £250,000 signing from Rushden & Diamonds and Mendez-Laing temporarily on loan from Wolves. Both starred in a memorable campaign, as Peterborough secured promotion to the Championship via the play-offs.
Tomlin was a huge influence, recording 11 goals and a further 11 assists. Mendez-Laing’s return was not so shabby either, making 40 appearances and scoring on five occasions.
Peterborough were keen to retain the services of the powerful winger, agreeing a fee in the region of £250,000, but the deal eventually collapsed when personal terms could not be agreed.
Mendez-Laing subsequently spent a frustrating season either on loan at Sheffield United or on the treatment table before eventually returning to Peterborough in July 2012, for around £100,000. Tomlin was still at the club, but with an enhanced reputation, having netted a further nine goals and provided 10 assists during his first season in the second tier.
Tomlin was also gaining a reputation off the field too, as Mendez-Laing’s signing coincided with Tomlin getting arrested outside a Leicester nightclub and later fined for failing to comply with a direction given by a police officer.
Peterborough struggled from the off, losing their first seven games of the season and Mendez-Laing missed most of this period with a hamstring injury. He netted on his return, in a 5-2 win over Burnley, but the first half of his season was blighted by a city centre disturbance that resulted in a police caution for threatening behaviour.
Mendez-Laing was shipped out on loan to Portsmouth for nine games, but returned during the following January transfer window, with manager Darren Ferguson claiming: “I don’t bear grudges.”