In the tranquil environment of Bearwood Park, our first team took their positions for the official 2019-20 first team squad photo this afternoon.
Glorious late summer sunshine beat down on the pristine new show pitch at our state-of-the-art training facility and the players were joined by manager José Gomes, Chief Executive Nigel Howe, Sporting Director Mark Bowen as well as the coaching staff, analysis and medical teams and kit manager for this season’s snap.
They arrived after a hard morning’s training, a couple of hours after the club photographer had already been in action taking squad photos of our Under-18s and Under-23s at the fast evolving Bearwood Park.
And Kelly Chambers’ team were also welcomed to Bearwood to stage the official Reading FC Women’s squad photo for 2019-20 at the magnificent facility.
History has formed the backdrop to our first team photos over the past three seasons - taking the team into the town centre to place our stars in front of the Maiwand Lion in Forbury Gardens in 2016, as the focus of Queen Victoria’s gaze by the town hall in 2017 and most recently at the heart of the rejuvenated Reading Abbey in 2018!
Connecting with our town has added colour and character in connecting this club with its community in an innovative way - and we’ll be back in town again, without a doubt.
But this season the focus is on our future. And our new training ground facility, which is developing at pace, is set to bring Reading Football Club together in a development which is being designed to be the envy of football clubs across the country.
The size and scale of the project should not be underestimated. At 120 acres in total, the facility itself will be nearly three times the size of our existing operation at Hogwood. The pitches are now ready for action, however development of the facility will continue apace throughout the 2019-20 season as First Team and Academy buildings have begun to take shape over recent weeks.
Today was the first opportunity some of our first team, Academy and Women’s team players have had to get a glimpse of the facility and their future at Reading Football Club. And once again, Bearwood Park impressed.
Reading FC 2019-20:
Front row (L-R): João Penedo (First Team Analyst and Assistant Coach), Jorge Baptista (First Team Goalkeeping Coach), George Pușcaș, Jordan Obita, Andy Rinomhota, Liam Moore, Jorge Mendonça (First Team Assistant Coach), Nigel Howe (Chief Executive), José Gomes (First Team Manager), Mark Bowen (Sporting Director), John O'Shea (First Team Coach), Tyler Blackett, Yakou Méïté, John Swift, Andy Yiadom, Rui Santos (First Team Fitness Coach), Eddie Lattimore (Head of Physical Performance).
Middle row: Ray Holland (First Team Physiotherapist), Matt Walker (First Team Sports Scientist / GPS Analysis Lead), Alex Forsey (Lead First Team Performance Analyst), Chris Gunter, Charlie Adam, Lucas João, Pelé, João Virginia, Rafael, Sam Walker, Jökull Andrésson, Matt Miazga, Ovie Ejaria, Lucas Boyé, Garath McCleary, Matt Hirons (Head Physiotherapist), James Hooper (Lead Soft Tissue Therapist), Danny Flitter (First Team Sports Therapist).
Back row: Stewart Bannister (Kit Manager), Fabio Rocha (First Team Therapist), Michael Olise, Josh Barrett, Teddy Howe, Tom McIntyre, Gabriel Osho, Sam Baldock, Omar Richards, Diogo Soares (First Team Technical Intern), Luke Bishop (First Team Kit Assistant).