This summer transfer window has been a slow, frustrating one. It was announced just over a month ago that Reading had been put under a ‘soft transfer embargo’ by the English Football League, which restricted our ability to make new signings. Our two arrivals so far - Joao Virginia and Michael Morrison - only came in after other senior players had left: Liam Kelly and Jon Dadi Bodvarsson.
However, great news: that arrangement is no longer in place. Jose Gomes has told BBC Berkshire in a one-to-one interview that the club is no longer under an embargo. When asked by Tim Dellor for the latest news on the embargo, Gomes said:
“Well I just know that - it’s fresh news - that yesterday evening they told me that we are not under an embargo anymore.
“I just want to know what it means exactly for me. I need to know the rules - if we need to move out again one player and it will be one by one, or if we can bring players just under our budget - I need to know the rules.”
Just before those comments, he had made it very clear that Reading are in need of new signings, but seemed optimistic about them coming in.
“We cannot hide that we need new faces. Not only because we really need [them], but because we need to say to our players that our aim is something bigger. We are waiting for these new faces. Hopefully during this week a lot of things will happen.”
Gomes went on to admit that the whole process has been frustrating for him, with the club being unable to bring in its preferred targets due to the embargo. Reading will likely now move on to its second and third choices.
“Some of [our targets] couldn’t wait anymore and they already are in the other clubs. But we have millions of players in the world and just for sure we will find the right players that can fit our ambition and our process and our way to play.
“We have this data with us - first, second and third options for all the positions that we need. We just need to know exactly the rules like I said, and after that we can take decisions.”
Of course, as Gomes says, the ending of the soft transfer embargo doesn’t mean that Reading are in the clear to get new signings. We still need to make sure that we operate within the confines of Financial Fair Play, so can’t start splashing the cash to hurriedly boost the squad.
Although we’ll likely see more loan signings and free agents coming, that doesn’t mean we can’t be ambitious. After all, Virginia is one of the most highly rated young goalkeepers in the Premier League, while Morrison has captained Birmingham City for the last few years.