One thing the new owners have been able to offer Brian Tevreden and Jaap Stam is the ability to hand out several new contracts over the past six months. Liam Moore, Liam Kelly and John Swift are just three of the men who’ve been able to commit to new long-term deals and this week has seen another player able to extend his stay at the Madejski Stadium.
Dutch midfielder/defender Joey van den Berg has signed a one-year extension to his contract, that will now keep him at the Mad Stad until the summer of 2019. Joey’s been a regular fixture in Stam’s lineups over the past two seasons and while he’s had the odd moment of madness, generally he’s been one of the Dutchman’s more impressive acquisitions.
Van den Berg was understandably thrilled to get another 12-months of security, telling the club’s website,
"It's the club, the people, it's very much how I like it. It's not pure business, it's more friendly.
"Sometimes you just feel good and it's very good to sign another year if you feel good.
"You always want to push forward and go to the highest level you want to be. There have been a lot of signings already, we can keep the team together and that will build an even stronger team. That was also a big reason for me to do it!"
What this says about the future prospects of younger players like George Evans and other fringe men like Stephen Quinn is less clear.
With Stam keen to keep Joey around for another campaign, this would seemingly push those players closer to the exit door, given the extensions handed out to Kelly and Swift, plus the purchases of Leandro Bacuna and Dave Edwards. Those additions don’t do much to suggest that Stam has too much faith in those currently on the fringes of the side.
Then again, Joey’s versatility and experience with Stam’s style of play make him ideal to have around the club even if he is phased out for Evans or someone else over the next 12 months.
So what do you think about another 12 months of Mr VDB? Happy? Or should we have waited until the summer? Let us know your thoughts below.