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Stam Gives Garath McCleary Injury Update

Reading's top scorer missed today's game with Wolves, now Jaap's given us an update.

Derby County v Reading - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images

There was one rather obvious name missing from Reading's team sheet today, as Garath McCleary was left out of Jaap Stam's 18 to face Wolves. Naturally that caused a little bit of worry amongst fans, especially considering his form so far this season had seen him named by yourselves as the the second best performer in 2016/17. It's also been a largely injury free campaign for GMac, with his 32 outfield starts only bettered by Chris Gunter.

After the game, Stam spoke to BBC Radio Berkshire and gave mixed news on the winger. The good news is that it's not a serious injury, the bad news is that it's one that sounds like it might not be going away any time soon.

'Garath wasn't completely fit. He could have played but the last couple of weeks, month he's had a problem with tendons in his knee and abdominals. He can't always bring what he wants to bring, so I told him it's better to take this week easy and prepare for games after Wolves, because we've got others who can play in that position.

We always talk about players working hard but sometimes it's good to give them a few extra days rest to keep them sharp.'

The fact Garath could have featured if needed is certainly a positive but the fact this is an ongoing issue does lead to some worries. McCleary's had a quiet couple of weeks and this news does go some way to explain it, yet if it's going to linger on, will he be able to get back to the form we saw in the first two-thirds of the campaign? Still, we're talking about a player who put in perhaps his finest spell in a Reading shirt while dealing with a broken back, so this should be easy!

In his place Adrian Popa and Yakou Meite both put in hard working shifts against Wolves but neither is quite at McCleary's level just yet. Fingers crossed a bit of rest does the Jamaican good and he can punish Newcastle on Tuesday.