Royals Looking To Complete Loan Swoop

Last updated : 20 October 2003 By Rob Cooper
Coppell, who will tomorrow take charge of Reading for just the third time, hopes to bring in defensive cover on loan before the end of the week.

The 48-year-old, who sensationally walked out on Brighton to manage the Royals, is looking to strengthen the backline following a succession of injuries to Reading players which have severely compromised the teams defensive displays.

Wolves defender Ivar Ingimarsson, who was once reportedly a target of pardew's, is said to be the man set for a move to the Madejski.

However, Coppell, who has been linked with a move for Seagulls skipper Danny Cullip, admits bringing in loan cover is going to be no easy task.

"It's not as easy as it was last year to get loan signings at this time of year," said Steve, speaking to the official site.

"Most of the Premiership clubs have got rid of the players they wanted to put out on loan. So it's not a matter of phoning up on a Friday lunchtime and having a choice of centre backs an full-backs to call on."

The Royals are expected to make do with what they have got for tomorrow night's home game against Walsall. But they will hope to have a new defender in place for Friday's game at Bramall Lane.

Steve Coppell fears that the razor shaep Blades will have athe ability to cut Reading's defence to shreds.

"We got away with it against Preston as we weren't exposed, but I'm not sure we can do that the whole time. With the games coming so thick and fast, I'm also not sure if I can do something for this week, but we'll be trying," he added.

Ingimarsson, who in the summer of 2002 was linked with a move to Reading, is the perceived favourite to become Coppell's first signing. The 26-year-old Iceland international who has proved a flop at Wolves, has previously played under Steve's command at Brentford, and also at Brighton last season on a loan basis.

Both John Mackie and Steve Brown have been struggling with injuries recently, leaving Adie Williams as the only senior centre-back at the club. Indeed, had John Mackie not passed an early afternoon fitness test on Saturday, the Royals would have found themselves in severe trouble at the back.

The backline has hardly been up to scratch in recent weeks either, a quick look at the records indicates that the team haven't kept a clean sheet since August 30th, alan pardew's last game in charge.