The stand-out quote from reading Jose Gomes’ first interview as the Royals’ new manager is: ‘my work starts today’, and that was definitely the case after Saturday’s performance against Middlesbrough. Although Reading lost 1-0 to Boro on the day, all eyes post-match were on the new appointment, and we wish Jose Gomes all the best to help us get out of this situation.
He talked to the club’s official website after his arrival was announced, and below is what he had to say. You can also see his opening video interview further down the article.
“I am confident in this project. I know how the club and the fans around the club feel the results, so I am here to help and to put our club in the right place. My work starts today. And in the first training session, I need to pass my ideas to the players. I am sure that they will be ready to receive and accept what I want to tell them.
“It is a big project and I felt from the first moment that I arrived at the club that everybody wants the same thing. I will try to give everybody the hope that we need – to be together, and to put the club in the right place. Only with hard work from the players can we achieve our goals.
“I need to know what the players are feeling, what they are thinking, how they feel about training and how we are playing. I have to feel this. We have to be a close group and build a strong team for the challenge that we have in front of us.
“I need to work in the coming weeks to get to know everybody. Watching the games on TV is completely different to working every day with them and feeling their character and the way they think.
“I like to start building from the back, and feeling that the players are happy playing a passing game and controlling the game with the ball. I know that we have the players with the quality to do that. We also have players with lots of pace to use the spaces that the opponents give.
“The Championship is the most competitive league in the world – definitely. Before the start of the season, about 20 of the teams want to go to the Premier League. You won’t find this in any other league in the world.
“It will be a very difficult mission. But I am completely sure that we will achieve what we want.”
For a manager going into a relegation fight at a club that’s been in a bit of a mess over the last few years, Jose Gomes is remarkably bullish. Both in what he says and how he says it, he’s confident and upbeat - two qualities that Reading FC could really use right now.
He also stresses that he’s taking on a “project”, rather than being a short-term firefighter. In fact, the focus of his interview overall is very much towards the long-term, and he even mentions the Premier League twice. No pressure then, hey?
With regards to playing style, he strikes me as more idealist than pragmatist. He seems convinced that Reading’s squad is capable of taking to his possession-based technical brand of football, and doesn’t talk about adapting his own ideas to suit the players.
The next few months certainly promise to be exciting. Whether Reading go for it in the January transfer window or not, Gomes will still likely bring a playing style that’s more easy on the eye than what we’ve seen in recent years. Here’s hoping he pulls it off.