Gaffer hoping international Royals can earn qualificationReading manager Steve Clarke hopes that his international contingent return to Berkshire with grins from ear to ear and their ambitions achieved with their respective countries.
Paolo Hurtado and Ali Al-Habsi have World Cup 2018 qualifiers with Peru and Oman respectively, while Danny Williams and USA can achieve qualification for the Confederations Cup with a win over Mexico. Reading captain Paul McShane is in the Ireland squad that can book a Euro 2016 play-off place, or automatic qualification at a push.
But, in particular, focus will be on Hal Robson-Kanu and Chris Gunter with Wales and Oliver Norwood with Northern Ireland – the two nations both have their first ever qualification to the European Championships in their own hands.
“I told all the boys that are going away on international duty to do well and make sure that they finish the jobs that they have started,” said Clarke. “Hopefully they will all come back with a smile on their face and ready to kick on again.
“For us, it’s a chance to work with the players that are left behind to try to improve what we’re doing. We have got one or two behind-closed-doors friendly matches that I might be able to give some of the players a run-out in. We’ll use the time wisely and make sure that we’re ready for the next game, which is here against Charlton.”
Our fixture against the Addicks after the international break takes place on Saturday 17th October at Madejski Stadium – click here for ticket information.