Our Under-23s are flying! Braces from Ben House and Danny Loader added to a goal from PL2 Player of the Month nominee Josh Barrett earned the Royals three points in a nine-goal thriller at Aston Villa last weekend - a win that took Scott Marshall's side to the top of the table!
That form is testament not only to talent but dedication from the players and the team around them that help them prepare and recover throughout a busy schedule of Academy football.
In the last week of October, our Under-23s found themselves in the middle of a busy fixture period which saw them win 3-2 at Middlesbrough and earn an International Cup point against Sparta Prague at the Madejski!
So ahead of their third game of the week - hosting Stoke City at Hogwood Park - recovery was crucial for the squad.
On Thursday, ahead of the visit of the Potters, to aid that recovery process the players came to Hogwood after a long sleep, had lunch and then performed a recovery session on bicycles and using foam rollers. But the final part of the day was a little bit different.
The lads paid a visit to Bracknell Town where they were able to use a cryotherapy unit.
The players entered the unit in just shorts, ear muffs, gloves, and thermal sleepers and remained in a phone booth-like area for two minutes at a temperature of -120 degrees celcius.
The aim of this to treatment is to speed up recovery, reduce the impact or threat of injury, increase players' immunity whilst also enhancing the players' sleep quality and reducing stress hormones.
It doesn't look comfortable, but the feedback from the players was positive and it led to a great 3-1 win against Stoke City on the Saturday.
So everyone at Reading Football Club's Academy would to say a big thank you to Bracknell Town for allowing us to use this facility. We look forward to taking on Bracknell Town themselves when we come up against them in the Berks&Bucks Cup later this month.