Adam Le Fondre became the first Reading player to score a hat-trick since Kevin Doyle did so against Crystal Palace in August 2008. In this interview, he talks about the Bolton game, his relationship with Pavel Pogrebneyak, Garath McCleary and most importantly the fans – who he describes as “magnificent” and claims he cannot “thank them enough”. He also comments on how we are “predominantly a second half of the season team” and hopes for a successful end to this campaign.
An official from the Oman Football Association (OFA) has confirmed an Omani businessman is in negotiations to buy 100% of the club, but his identity is not yet known. This businessman goes up against a consortium from America who have also placed an offer.
Having put in a few solid performances after joining the Royals in September and then missing 7 weeks though injury, Chris Baird’s short-term contract has now expired and he is free to discuss terms with other teams. A Reading spokesperson said the club is keen to offer a new deal, but need to undertake further fitness tests before doing so. Notts Forest, Brighton and Ipswich are all rumoured to be lining up deals too.
Nigel Adkin’s in-depth interview on a whole range of topics – that majestic Bolton 7, Alfie and Pog’s partnership, the reasons Alfie isn’t for sale, our top-performing midfield and the supporters.
Skipper Jobi McAnuff says expectations will rightfully be raised over about a promotion push this season after our performance at the weekend, and says the squad have never stopped believing this is possible. He also implies a new philosophy has entered the minds of the squad recently in terms of closing teams down and pressing higher up the pitch. If that is the tactic that brings results, long may it continue.
Just two weeks ago Hope Akpan’s Reading career was in tatters as he angled for a loan move away to play regular first team football. Fast-forward a fortnight and the young midfielder has played an instrumental part in wins against both Watford and Bolton, and it will be hard for someone to force him out of the team. He talks through his “swivel” and “hit” to slot away his first goal for the club on Saturday and hopes he can get many more games now and many more goals.
Despite being consistently impressive early on in the season, the stutter in Danny Guthrie’s form in terms of his creativity and lethargic pace of play is what reporter Charles Watts argues is the reason he should not walk straight back into the team when fit again. Watts instead believes Adkins would be wrong to alter the midfield duo containing the energy of Hope Akpan and a revitalised Danny Williams.
Not seen since a dreary December 2012 day against Nigel Adkin’s then Southampton team, Jason Roberts’ career threatening hip injury finally seems to have got the better of him. His dejected and forlorn comments are the sign of a player who has been pushed to the limit, and is fearing the worse. Neither the operation, steroid injections nor time abroad have got the front man to the point where his body allows him to make it through more than 2 training sessions, and a recent “breakdown” has made him seriously consider whether it is time to give up football. He says “you can only try to come back so many times before you realise it is not going to happen”. One final operation is on the cards for Roberts, and if that’s no good, time will be called on his career.