Manager aiming to have McCleary and Rakels availableDeniss Rakels and Garath McCleary have both been unavailable through injury since the international break, but Royals boss Brian McDermott is hoping to have those attacking options in his armoury again this weekend against Birmingham.
McCleary travelled to link up with the Jamaica squad in the international break, but wasn’t able to play because of a calf injury; Rakels had to withdraw from the Latvia squad due to a hamstring problem. While Hal Robson-Kanu remains sidelined for the meantime, he could welcome back the other two attackers this weekend.
“Hopefully we’ve got Deniss back for selection, as well as Garath McCleary,” said McDermott ahead of the meeting with Birmingham. “They both trained yesterday, and they will both train today and tomorrow.
“So they should be back in the frame. It’s more good players that are coming into the squad, which is good news.
“Everyone came through the game against Forest okay – we had a bit of a warm-down yesterday [Wednesday] and some of the guys trained and did a bit more.
“We’ve got a busy period – it’s encouraging that we’ve won the last two and we’re unbeaten in the last three, so let’s see if we can get a real bit of momentum going.”