Royals in Slovenia, but what of those left behind?
Now I don't mean that question literally, I understand they will still be training and there is a reserve game scheduled in for July 20th against Staines Town, but what does the future hold for them at the Madejski Stadium?
The first team regulars all travelled to Slovenia (on a budget airline, I must add!) but there were some notable absentee's who were left behind and left to spend the next 10 days at Hogwood Park. Most notable players left behind were Scott Davies, who I thought was impressive at right back against Farnborough, David Mooney and Shaun Cummings. And these three were left out at the expense of young striker Jake Taylor, who has made the travelling party and appears to have a big future at the club. Brian McDermott has also opted to take 4 goalkeepers.
Davies is the one who surprises me most, as I mentioned he played well at Farnborough and I have always liked the look of him but must admit I have only seen him in midfield before. With Cisse and Matejovsky gone I really thought he would be part of our squad this season and get some game time but it would appear that he could well have to find a future elsewhere. I believe he could well do a 'Simon Cox' and drop down a division initially but could well prove us wrong if we did let him go.
Mooney looks like he has no future here, he didn't even get a game against Farnborough and despite talk of wanting to stay, McDermott is now the 3rd manager to snub him. He would do well to find himself a club as he won't get any football if he stays.
Cummings was signed by Brendan Rodgers last summer and despite playing regularly to begin with, he found himself without a first team game since October and we have of course signed Andy Griffin who will be first choice right back. He has been linked with Wycombe but that move fell through when they snapped up someone else however I think Cummings has a future here. I may be in a minority there but we do not have a great deal of 'natural' cover in the full back positions and the former Chelsea player is still young and has time to develop. I know some of his performances last season were pretty poor but he was pushed straight into a crap team that was on a run of crap results, under a crap manager so I feel we should give him a chance.
Ivar Ingimarsson was also left at home as he recovers from his hamstring injury whilst Chris Armstrong appears to be close to retirement after continued knee problems, and he has not even returned for pre season training.
Keep upto date with all the news from the tour of Slovenia here at Vital Reading.