Forward aiming to keep kicking onDespite his rich vein of goal scoring form so far this season, Royals forward Nick Blackman is keeping his feet firmly on the ground.
Reading’s leading goal-scorer was keen to emphasise the role of team work in the clubs positive start to the campaign and how important it will be in keeping the good football going, in particular with Middlesbrough offering the latest test this weekend.
“Everyone is enjoying their football at the moment and we’re getting some good results. I’m enjoying having a run in the team and being part of something that looks exciting going forward,” said Blackman.
“It’s nice to hear your name sung by the fans, but it’s about the team. We have to pull together and to stick together and make sure we get the right results. Everyone in the squad gets on well off the pitch, which is massively important for team spirit so it’s good to see that at the club.
“This is definitely one of the strongest teams I’ve played in, but we know we can improve on certain aspects which will make us even better. The management staff and players demand from themselves every day in training – it’s 100 per cent and the intensity is really good – so we need to keep that up.”
The attacker, who has eight competitive goals to his name this season, knows Saturdays’ visitors to Madejski Stadium, Middlesbrough, will offer a stern test, but feels the team will approach the fixture like any other.
“Middlesbrough are up there so it will be a difficult game, but any team can beat any team in this league,” he continued. “So every game is tough, but it’s one we go into full of confidence.
“We take notice of their strengths and weaknesses but we want to go out there and impose ourselves on the opposition.”
Boro, who sit one place ahead of the Royals in second, have won their last seven games in all competitions and were one of the favourites, before the Sky Bet Championship season began, for promotion. Blackman however feels Saturday’s game will be a close contest and the Royals strength in depth could play its part.
He explained: “We’ve got some really talented players and the manager has brought more in, and they’ve really added to the group. Hopefully after some good results so far we can kick on.
“I think players and fans can take confidence at how strong our squad is and that people can make such an impact when coming off the bench which is really important.”
Advance tickets begin at £25 for Adults, £15 for 65 & Over, £10 for ages 18-24 and £7 for Under-17s – click here for full ticket information for this game.