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Boss: System change key

20 July 2013

Adkins on Olhanense win

Manager Nigel Adkins was delighted to see his team beat Olhanense 5-1 in a pre-season friendly in Portugal, and pleased to see a first half tactical switch pay dividends.

The home side started well and took an early lead, but a change of strategy in midfield helped enable the Royals to control the game, and we led 2-1 at half time before turning the screw after the break.

Adkins said, "Early on we thought 'we've got a game on here' because they were looking really tasty and good at keeping the ball. We wanted to get a flow so changed the formation around with our three in midfield, we went to a 1 and a 2 instead of a 2 and a 1, the lads stepped up well and we controlled the game.

"We scored two good goals in the first half, then in the second half the lads again demonstrated a great level of fitness and ability to keep the ball, be patient and control the game. Some of the goals we scored were great, we scored five and could have scored more. We wanted to pass and move the ball. 

"We've come away with a good victory but I look at the performance and way the players kept working for each other. It rounds off what's been a good week away from home."

There were five different scorers on the night: Le Fondre, Gorkss, Drenthe, McCleary and Obita, another pleasing aspect for the boss. 

He said, "I look at the goals we scored and some of the pace in the team, the togetherness in the team.

"We look strong in what we've got, obviously there will always be talk of 'can we add and keep strengthening' because that's what we've got to go and do. But you can see out there we've got players who put in good performances tonight. I'm really pleased with the level of fitness.

"Like all clubs we'll be no different and want to keep improving on what we do. The important thing now is that we're improving the players we've got. We have good competition for places, everyone wants to be involved, they know it's not about eleven players, it's about a desire to be successful.

"We want to be a fit and mobile side, you need that in the modern game. From an athletic point of view I want us to control, pass it and move into spaces. It's a progressive pre-season and progressive throughout the season as well. We want to start strong and build it through the season."

Look for full highlights from the game on Reading FC Player.

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