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Gooding enjoys seeing 'intense' Reading training in Holland

Former player and joint player-manager on Dutch training camp so far...

19 July 2017

The word 'intensity' is one that has become synonymous with the Royals' Dutch training camp so far, with former player and manager Mick Gooding noticing the hard work Jaap Stam's side are putting in while in Holland.

The three-time Reading FC Player of the Season, out in Oosterbeek with BBC Radio Berkshire, attended one of the Royals' training sessions and immediately noticed the energy in the squad at this early stage of pre-season.

Gooding spent eight years with the Royals as a player, three of which as a joint player-manager along with fellow former Royal Jimmy Quinn. The pair led the club to the Division One Play-Off Final in 1995, an agonising 4-3 defeat against Bolton Wanderers after extra time.

On the Royals' training regime, Gooding said: "It was really good! It was lively, it was very, very intense in the short bursts that they played, which is what you want from your players.

"You want that intensity, and everyone was giving that.

"When you're away for pre-season, you can get rid of any distractions that you've got at home and it definitely helps. 

"It helps build a bit of camaraderie amongst the group, you can get your work done with no interruptions, so it's really good."

Gooding made more than 300 appearances for the Royals as a player, and his advice to Stam's players would be to embrace the hard work that comes with pre-season.

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"I had lots of pre-seasons in my time with different clubs," he added. "You know it's going to be hard work but you've got to enjoy that hard work.

"You're never bothered about the results because all you're looking at doing is building for the first game of the season."

Gooding also praised the togetherness that the squad has while together in Holland, with every player seemingly on board with what Jaap Stam is building with this current Royals squad.

"We don't have much interaction with the players really, other than after the match, when we interview a few of the players," Gooding explained.

"But to see the players on the training ground here, you can see that everybody is buying into what Jaap Stam is trying to do.

"I'm sure that they'll kick on again this season. You can just see it, for his first season I thought it was phenomenal and we could tell that all the players had bought in.

"I think they'll be pushing for promotion again this season, without a shadow of a doubt."


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