Today we hear from Roger Titford – STAR Board member
Top of the table
It’s great to be battling at the top end of the table again after the past three seasons. Our December injury crisis reminds me of 1994. Just as now we were a surprise packet in the second tier but we lost key players like Simon Osborn, Adie Williams and Dylan Kerr at this time of year. We came through it and finished second in the table. Only problem – only one automatic promotion place that season! Let’s hope we can beat Norwich tonight and get nearer to the top two spots.
Talking Tactics with Noel Hunt
Berks & Bucks FA and Reading FC Community Trust are pleased to confirm that our next online Talking Tactics event will be held on Thursday 17th December, 7pm to 8pm. We will be joined by ex-Reading FC and Irish International striker, Noel Hunt. As always we will talk about football, mental health and give all participants the opportunity to ask questions of Noel. If you would like to take part in or just listen to this upcoming Talking Tactics event please complete the short registration form by clicking HERE.
As always it’s completely free and open to anyone aged 18+. Once you’ve registered I will send you a link to the meeting (please allow a couple of days) and then simply follow the link shortly before 7pm on Thursday 17th December. We hope you can join us!
Be part of the mural
As part of the 150th celebrations a giant long-standing mural of Reading fans is being created by Chris Rutterford to stand on the stadium outer wall. You can be part of that mural too – there’s a fee involved in painting your picture but this could make an ideal gift for Christmas. For further details, see the artist’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/ReadingFC150thAnniversaryFanMuralByChrisRutterford/
Limited capacity matches
Fortunately Reading is still in Tier 2 and we’re able to welcome fans tonight. Not so Brentford for by Saturday London will be in Tier 3. The Covid situation brings ever-changing difficulties with matches this week involving Stevenage and Bristol Rovers postponed due to positive player tests.
At Reading, the club is using Method 1 of SG02 to calculate the spacing (this is the document from the Safety at Sports Grounds Authority) of supporters and this is the method used by most clubs. It is ‘one metre spacing with mitigation’, that is all supporters to wear a mask. The East Stand can hold 3000 fans on this basis (hence the gaps). The club has decided to use just one stand in order to give the players a focus and keep the costs of stewarding to a minimum.
If you cannot wear a mask please do contact the club for a wristband to wear. This eases the job of the stewards who need to make sure masks are in place (and prevent misunderstandings).
Football Supporters Association
I was one of a hundred attending the FSA’s AGM by zoom last Friday. The FSA is in its first full year of operation since the merger between the Football Supporters Federation and Supporters Direct and the merger has worked well. But the organisation’s agenda has been swamped by Covid and financial crisis-related issues. In 2021 there is genuine hope that we can push forward with the government’s manifesto commitment to a fan-led review of the game’s governance and also with the Sustain The Game campaign. Whatever happens, 2021 will provide challenges for the great majority of clubs and their fans.