Having been the surprise package of the Premiership last season; few could have foreseen the problems that lay ahead for Steve Coppell this campaign. Gaining a credible 0-0 draw at Old Trafford on the opening day of the season had seemingly signalled normal service resumed but a wretched run which has only seemed them pick up one victory and sees them placed in the bottom three; have Reading become the new Wigan? Steve Coppell has cited an unfair season schedule for the reason his side is failing.
Coppell said: “It may well be that people have the measure of us, but maybe at the moment circumstances are conspiring against us with a couple of key injuries.
“It sounds like sour grapes, but we travel further than anyone else the day after an international break; The big boys don’t travel too far.”
“At the next international break, guess where we travel the Saturday after? Blackburn away.”
“It does sound like sour grapes, but to me it’s meaningful and it does have an effect”. “We’ve never been here. I’m sure when they ask round in the summer ‘do you have any particular requirements’, I’m sure the big boys, because they have had many years experience, are able to say ‘well, if you want us to cooperate in certain other things then we’d like a little favour in return’.
Steve Coppell does have a point but some would say that it is best to get these fixtures out of the way while the league is relatively tight; is he clutching at straws here? Maybe during those long trips Coppell could have spent more time assessing the opposition.