Defender's early starts paying offJake Cooper’s best attribute is his attitude, according to Royals boss Nigel Adkins.
The defender bagged the first two goals of his senior career on Saturday as Reading fought back from 1-0 down to win 2-1 at Norwich City.
Having come through the ranks at the club, Cooper started only his third match in the Championship at the weekend and Adkins was full of praise for the mindset of his towering centre-back.
“Jake is in the gym at quarter to eight every morning doing his stretching exercises,” Adkins revealed.
“He’s growing in stature every time he plays. He’s a big lad but he can play, he’s quick, he’s scores goals, is intelligent and has got a fantastic attitude.
“He had an excellent game yet again on Saturday and scored two very good goals. He’s been involved in every game this season and we have got a lot of confidence in our youngster players.
“Coops has played several times already this season and contributed, as have several academy graduates from last season. We have done that with several players.
“He and Michael Hector have both come through our system. They have both made mistakes this season but they’re gaining that invaluable experience by doing so.
“We have an excellent academy and there is a pathway to the first team. There is a togetherness and an integration, as you can see in our teamsheets this season.
“The number of academy players that have made their debut for the first team since August bodes well for the future of this football club.”