What’s happened so far?
After the busiest January transfer window in Reading’s history last year, it’s been a very quiet state of affairs this time around, with a loan deal for Aston Villa defender Tommy Elphick the only new arrival at the time of writing.
As a result, the departures list is also a short one, with academy graduate Rob Dickie the lone permanent exit, joining Oxford United at the start of the month. In addition, Adrian Popa has moved to Saudi Arabian side Al-Taawoun on loan until the end of the season. Youngsters Josh Barrett and Jake Sheppard will also spend the rest of the campaign away from Berkshire, at Coventry City and Guiseley, with their loan deals confirmed in December.
What has Jaap Stam said?
“You always want to add players who can add something to the squad.
“We are still trying to get a few players in that can help us out but it’s not easy because we don’t have a lot to spend.
“A lot of players are quite expensive. We have got several names who are an option but it’s not always easy with loan fees, transfer fees, salary to think about.”
Meanwhile, Andries Ulderink has talked about the type of player that the club are looking for:
“We only want players who can really help the team straight away. We’re not looking at the long-term because we have enough players.
“What I’ve heard is that the market is very difficult at the moment.
“It would be stupid to find players who are young and talented. For where we are now we need players with a certain mentality.”
Who could come in?
Reading’s priority appears to be a striker, with Derby’s Chris Martin the most rumoured name. Due to the Rams’ wealth of options up top, the Scottish international would be available for loan, and after Sunderland ended their interest, the Royals could be first in line.
Jaap Stam also confirmed interest in Barnsley’s Tom Bradshaw earlier in the window, whilst The Guardian reporter Ed Aarons has claimed that Reading have had an £8 million bid rejected for Jordan Hugill of Preston, but that seems to only be a recycled summer rumour considering the Royals’ apparent lack of funds.
In defence, The Daily Mirror have reported that Portsmouth centre-back Matt Clarke could be on his way to Berkshire, but Tommy Elphick’s arrival is likely to put to bed that rumour. As Jordan Obita and Omar Richards are both out injured, Stam could also look to bring in a left-back on loan, with Cameron Borthwick-Jackson (Manchester United) and Sam McQueen (Southampton) two players mentioned.
Of course new names could emerge throughout the day, with Reece Oxford and Lewis Grabban coming very much out of the blue this time last year.
Could anyone leave?
It’s unlikely that any first team player will exit RG2 today without a replacement lined up.
There have been question marks over Liam Moore’s future for most of the month, but rumours linking him to the likes of West Ham and West Brom have gone quiet recently so the defender seems set to stay until the summer at least.
It wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see an academy player or two go out on loan, with youngsters such as Tennai Watson, Axel Andresson and Sam Smith potentially keen for first team football.
Stay tuned to The Tilehurst End throughout the day for the latest news on any comings or goings.