According to Portuguese newspaper O Jogo, Jose Gomes will today agree a deal to become Reading’s new manager.
The Daily Mirror first suggested last Saturday that the Royals were keen to appoint the 48-year-old, who is currently in charge of Portuguese side Rio Ave, who sit sixth in the Primeira Liga table.
Last night, Rio Ave played a cup game against Sporting Lisbon, losing 5-2, and afterwards Gomes spoke on the speculation:
“It’s true that I received an invitation, the contact they had with me did not last any longer than that.
“I’ve been several years out of the country, this is a Rio Ave issue, I’m an employee of the club, but I am very happy here. I feel part of this family, regardless of financial matters, the difference of what football is in England, but it would never turn the back to those who trusted me.
“For my relationship with Rio Ave, with people, with supporters, would be a very difficult decision to take.”
These comments have been translated through Google Translate so must be taken with a pinch of salt. However, it makes it seem as though Gomes is in no rush to leave Rio Ave, who he only joined back in the summer, having spent five years outside of Portugal managing Videoton (Hungary), Al-Taawoun, Al-Ahli (both Saudi Arabia) and Baniyas (UAE).
He does also suggest though that ultimately he’ll leave the decision to the powers that be at Rio Ave, and O Jogo claim that that decision has now been made, with negotiations set to begin between the Portuguese side and Reading. Sporting Witness reference the €1 million compensation fee that has been hinted at by a number outlets.
If true, it means that the Royals, or perhaps Kia Joorabchian, have finally got their/his man, after being turned down by two other Portuguese candidates - Luis Castro and Vitor Pereira.