Ayub Masika spoke of his delight at becoming a Reading player, after penning terms to join on loan for the remainder of the season from Chinese Super League club, Beijing Renhe.
The 27-year-old impressed during a trial period with the club, and spoke for the first time after agreeing to don blue and white hoops for the rest of the 2019-20 campaign.
“That’s the programme, that I shall join the team until the end of the season. I’m ready, and I hope I can bring much more to the team,” Masika said.
“It’s been good so far; I think everybody has been very welcoming, very professional. For me, this is a new step and a new challenge.
“For sure, to come to the Championship, to England, it’s a very big step for me. It’s always been in my dreams, so this is a very big step for me.
“It’s always been like that as a football player, to come to England is one of the best things that can happen to any football player in the world. It’s a pleasure to be here.
“My whole family were always looking to the Premier League, to the Championship, and I’ve looked forward to getting here.”
The versatile player started his youth career in Belgium, where a roll of honour of his previous teammates shows the company he has been keeping in his career so far…
“I started at Anderlecht and after there I went to Genk, it was pretty good growing up with my path to my career.
“In Genk, there were very good players that I played with, and I’m trying to follow their path as well. Players like Kevin [De Bruyne], [Christian] Benteke, Thibaut Courtois, these were all my teammates so I’m looking forward to coming and playing in the same leagues as them.”
When asked what he brings to a team, the versatile winger spoke unequivocally about how his game has developed in recent years.
“I like to bring speed to the team,” he said with a smile. “In Europe in the last few years, I think my football has been changing.
“When you go back five or six years, I was just enjoying being technical and stuff, but I’m now much more focussed on points and status. I’m much more focussed to be more efficient.
With several months left to go this season, Reading still harbour ambitions of climbing the table – and Masika hopes to do his bit on the pitch in the Royal cause.
“We’ve still got a chance, if we go 100% every week, every game, I think anything is still possible,” he said.
“I’m very glad to be at this club, I’m going to give 100% in every minute I’m going to get, and I’m going to hope that we have better times.”