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Interviews

Jaap pleased with hard-working depth of Royals squad

Stam happy to have more weapons in his arsenal...

18 August 2017

Jaap Stam has praised the quality he has at his disposal throughout the Royals squad ahead of Saturday's encounter against Preston North End at Deepdale.

Stam stressed the importance of having players with a high work-rate who can maintain a high level of performance and stamina in his squad, something which he believes his current crop has.

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The Royals' manager added that he feels he can tailor his squad selection to the opposition his side will be facing as the season progresses.

"In the way that we play, the wing players for us are very important," Stam said. "They need to attack and to be a threat… to score, make opportunities and go forward. And they need to defend as well.

"The same goes for defenders as well. We ask them to take initiative in attack.

"But if the wingers and the centre-forward work very hard as well, it’s good when you have the players on the bench to bring the same level.

"That’s about making progress as a club and as a team. We can swap it and change it, depending on how they are and who is the opposition."

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Stam said having an entire squad that can keep up the quality and intensity he asks of them for 90 minutes will make a big difference at the end of the season, with strength in depth a priority for the manager.

He also fully expects players to be disappointed when they aren't named in the starting line-up, adding: "It is important that the people on the bench have a lot of quality so that you can make a difference if you make a sub. That’s what we’re aiming for.

"You need to have quality subs that can finish the job – bring us the same level or sometimes even more. It’s only a good thing that every player wants to start in the first 11, and that’s how it needs to be.

"If there’s a player in the squad who is happy just to be on the bench, then he’s got a problem with me!"


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