Writer: Chris Kitley
Date:Thursday July 31 2008
Royals boss Steve Coppell has stated that morale is high in the Reading camp following the successful tour of Sweden.
Since relegation, there has been a bit of cloud above the Madejski Stadium, with the future of certain players in doubt and rumours of discontent in the ranks.
However, despite speculation surrounding some of the clubs star players, it is only striker Dave Kitson and winger Glen Little who have moved on to pastures new.
With the start of the new season just over a week away, the Royals could still lose another player or two, but Coppell insists the current crop of players have bonded.
He said 'We have had a week together and it is coming together quite nicely. We look okay.
'You get playing and the concentration is on football. Since we`ve been here (in Sweden), the players haven`t read or heard or seen any constant speculation about their futures. I think now nearly all the players would prefer it if they could concentrate on what they are doing here and now.
'There is no guarantee that we will play well once we get going, but the attitude seems to be a lot brighter than it was three or four weeks ago.'
Despite the togetherness of the squad, Coppell is still prepared for late bids from top-flight teams for his star players.
He added: 'Overall we had 21 players in Sweden with Noel Hunt joining us. We have got Bryn at home injured. It looks like a tight squad and during the course of a Championship season you are going to use in excess of 20 players. I`m reasonably comfortable with.
'The fear is that, and I`m not suggesting we have had any enquiry in the last week, but the fear is going into the last week of our preparation, that we might get a big offer from a Premiership club.
'You can`t predict what will happen. There are other deals that are sort of taking away the possibilities of other deals, which is great for me as far as I`m concerned.
'We`ll be on standby come what May but I will be delighted if this group of players stays here and starts the campaign.'
Date:Thursday July 31 2008
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