After the midweek match at Wolves, José Gomes’ mind switched very quickly to the next challenge. That comes in the form of a visit to Swansea City this Saturday.
The Swans are second in the table, only goal-difference behind Leeds United. So the preparation begins immediately for the Royals – planning, preparing their bodies and getting ready for a difficult fixture.
A much-changed Reading outfit impressed against their top-flight opponents in midweek. So there are options to choose from, with form and fitness a factor in a hectic September schedule.
“Now is the moment to travel home, and during the trip we will study Swansea,” said Gomes on Wednesday evening before the journey back to Berkshire. “Like usual we will watch their games and the things that my analysts have prepared.
“For sure it will be tough. They play very good football, and they have very good players. Fantastic mobility in the middle and the way that they organise their defensive actions – for sure it will be a very tough game. Now is the time to prepare for it.
“The players felt that they did good things against Wolverhampton – that they are able to play away against a Premier League team and show good football. That is good for confidence. We need to show consistency in the future – the best side, all the time.
“The players which played against Wolves showed that I can count on them. This gives life to the group, life to the team. It gives us energy. Everybody knows that they must work and fight daily, otherwise the other players can take their place.
“It’s a tough week for us. They must rest on Thursday. The players who didn’t travel to Wolves worked very hard in training. And the players who played, it was tough for them as well.
“The temptation is very high to use the same players, but I look at the schedule and it could be very hard to play so soon again after playing against Wolves and then again when we play Fulham.”