Has this season been as bad as it looks from the outside?
Yes! It started in the summer with a shocking transfer window, continually missing out on targets, deals falling through and that carried over into the season. They have not played as bad as results have suggested they have just been unable to defend and therefore have given up any chance of ever being in a game.
Did Alan Stubbs deserve more time?
On the face of it, being sacked 14 games into a three-year deal may look hasty, but they were just on an irreversible slide under Stubbs. For a former Premier League defender he had no idea how to set a defence up and we conceded 32 goals in 13 league games. There was no sign of improvement, he had the fans offside from a very early point, he just wasn’t the right fit. So, no he didn’t deserve more time because the chairman is desperate to stay in the Championship and we are already six points adrift after just 13 games. That tells you how bad it has been.
Five managers since September last year is quite a record. Is that down to bad luck or unrealistic expectations?
It’s certainly not down to bad luck. That stat is slightly skewed as Steve Evans was the first of those managers and his time was up. But then the problem has been trying to build a long-term sustainability while also staying in the Championship. That is going to be probably an impossible job for Kenny Jackett or anyone who would have got the job. Ultimately so far the chairman’s desire to stay in the Championship had won over any longer-term plan and the result has been to sack Neil Redfearn and then Alan Stubbs. Neil Warnock, of course, saw the light and got out while he was still revered.
Were there any candidates to replace Stubbs that excited or worried you?
Kenny Jackett is about as good as we could have hoped for. He has great experience of the Championship and will hopefully be able to set up the team properly that gives us a chance in this division. If we do go down it is likely to be at least with a fight and he has the record that suggests he can bring us back up next season.
Who should Reading be wary of on Saturday?
Danny Ward has finally found his scoring boots and his six goals so far have been pretty much the only positive. Chelsea loanee Izzy Brown has been promising too, but has been off the boil in the last couple of games.