Faced with local and national journalists after joining the Royals, new boss Paul Clement had his say on a number of topics… here’s a round-up of what he had to say! And take a look at the video above on iFollow.
Clement on… reasons for joining
It’s a really good opportunity. It’s a club I’ve always respected, going back many years. When I was involved in youth football and came across Reading’s Academy – which was always very strong – and also at senior level too they have always been very competitive.
Having spoken to Ron Gourlay and the owners, and the ambition of the club… the immediate aim is to secure the club in the Championship with eight games to go. But beyond that there is a lot of ambition to take this club further forward.
They were penalty kicks away from the Premier League last season. That’s where the club want to be, and that’s the ambition I have as well – to coach at that level again.
Clement on… the remainder of the season
It is difficult – all games are difficult, whether that’s in the Premier League or Championship. I’ve experienced working in both. I had eight months, 30 games at Derby… every game was challenging.
I look at these eight games and as I see it, if the players play to their potential and we manage to get some ideas across quickly, get an early win and build some confidence, they’re all winnable games. That’s the way I look at it.
On my first day at Swansea, we had a game that night… and we won it! This is a better situation. I’m going to have four good training days with the players. We’ve got a really good chance of being well prepared for next Friday night.
I’ll make it very clear; this won’t be me turning things around – it’ll be ‘us’. It’ll be a team effort. Myself working with Ron Gourlay and the ownership, all of the backroom staff and the players. It’ll be a collective effort.
99% of my concentration is on the next eight games. The other 1% is about moving the club forward and getting into the top league.
Clement on… ambitions
I have a burning ambition to be successful. I’ve had wonderful experiences at lots of different levels of football, as an assistant and as a manager. Some of those times have been very good, and some have been testing and challenging. In all of those times I’ve gained experience.
When I was a younger coach, I didn’t think experience was so important. I thought it was about knowledge, understanding and personality. But having had more experience, I know how important it is. I’ll be using all of that experience to try and make this team better.
Clement on… getting back into football
My house couldn’t be any tidier, my car couldn’t be any cleaner, the grass is looking wonderful! But it’s time to get back to coaching football. It was three months, and that’s three months too long for me.
But as well as cleaning the house and washing the car, I’ve done some really interesting things in the last three months. Some with the media, some visiting managers in this country, and most recently I was in Los Angeles and had a fantastic meeting with the head coach of Los Angeles Rams where we shared ideas about leadership, management and coaching.
When this opportunity came up I spoke to Ron a couple of days ago, things moved very quickly and I was back on a flight to England.
Clement on… the role of our fans
One thing I know from players and being around good teams is that players love to be supported and cheered on by their fans.
I’m really hoping that starting on Friday we’ll get good numbers in, they’ll get behind the players, and give them that extra little bit of incentive to push a bit harder when things are tough, and to help us get results.