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José | "We must keep the positives in our hands"

Reading boss in high spirits ahead of Blackburn clash in RG2

18 September 2019

José Gomes spoke highly of the relationships his players have formed, as the new summer signings settle into the squad for the autumn months.

Following a seven-point week prior to the international break, Reading were left frustrated by a home defeat at Charlton, before goalkeeping heroics from Darren Randolph ensured Middlesbrough held on for a 1-0 win over Reading at the weekend.

Royals manager Gomes remains confident that his squad can get back on track quickly at the weekend, against a Blackburn side that sit three points above Reading in the Championship table as it stands.

"We need to be optimists and believe and trust in the process," Gomes said, in the idyllic surroundings of Bearwood Park. "The way that my players have been working, if we keep this spirit, it will be very, very difficult to beat us.

"There's a very good atmosphere in the changing room, a very good relationship between all of them. We must feel hope in this group because they will give a lot of victories.

"I really believe that if we win the next game, we will have a long period of victories in front of us. We were better against Middlesbrough in all the data - number of shots, ball possession, number of passes, forward passes, the defensive challenge, we were better in all of those areas. 

"But it's football. We didn't score, we created a lot of situations where we could, but we didn't. We must keep the positive things in our hands, help the players to be better and show them that we trust them. 

"We really believe that they will give to us a lot of fantastic things in the future."

Gomes then spoke of the threats that Blackburn will carry at Madejski Stadium at the weekend. Tony Mowbray's side have already shown that they are a difficult side to break down, having kept four clean sheets in their last five Championship matches.

But the Royals will operate with the incentive of being able to overtake their visitors in the standings with a win at the weekend, with Gomes hoping to convert his side's promise into points come Saturday afternoon.

"They have a very good dynamic. Blackburn are playing very well, mixing youth energy with quality experienced players," the Reading manager said of Saturday's opponents.

"Dack, definitely, is the player who is linking all of their game. He's trying to receive between lines and linking with the forward players, and there's a very good dynamic with the full-backs.

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Bradley Dack has scored three goals and assisted two more for Rovers in the opening seven matches of the season.

"They played six games with one formation and then in one game they changed it. We have this doubt, but their dynamic is basically the same.

"We just need to keep our focus and do the things we can do properly. I'm sure we'll get good things in Saturday's game.

"We are in 17th position with seven points, but if you look at last season and compare the table after seven games last season, with what happened at the end of the season, you'll be surprised. 

"It's the Championship. It's a long, long season in front of us. We have 39 games in front of us, a lot of good things will happen in the future."


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