My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

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Mike Hunt
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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Mike Hunt » 27 Sep 2018 00:18

Zip wrote:
Nameless wrote:Just to offer a balance I met up with a friend yesterday who works at the club. His take on the behind the scenes situation was rather different. He said Gourlay was brought in because the Chinese believed the club needed an utter revamp. His brief was to sort it out from top to tail. He has upset people, mostly people who needed to be moved on either because they weren’t doing a good job or they weren’t open to the fundamental changes being made. It does seem you either buy in to what Gourlay is doing or you go, which is fine if he is doing the right stuff and I guess the issues arise when people disagree with him or are told they aren’t part of the plans. My friend reckoned his dealings with Gourlay have been challenging but Gourlay and the people he has brought in are very professional and have ambitious plans.
I have no view either way, I have never met Gourlay or Nani or any of the newer people at the club but was interested to hear positive views from someone at the club. They did say that a rebuild from the ground up was going to be a long term project and were still in the early stages so not to expect to see much forward progress in the immediate future. The owners are happy funding the club whilst a Gourlay sorts stuff out.
As ever I’m not going to give any clues as to who I spoke to to avoid possibly embarrassing them and accept some make be cynical as to sources, that is your perogative.



Is your friend going to remain nameless Nameless?

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Denver Royal » 27 Sep 2018 00:50

Lower West wrote:Gourlay having worked at Chelsea certainly has the CV.

Relevance to us? Once he's done swinging his machete, how long do you see him being here?

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by URZZZZZZZZ » 27 Sep 2018 08:09

If (and it’s a big if), the club needed an overhaul from top to bottom, then it’s important that the fans have some patience with the new regime.

That said, I can’t get my head around just how much regression has taken place across all areas of the club since the change of CEO was made. I appreciate there may be an element of one step back before we can make two steps forward, but how far back do we need to go before we can start progressing?

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Forbury Lion » 27 Sep 2018 09:04

Lower West wrote:Gourlay having worked at Chelsea certainly has the CV.
Maybe when were in a similar position to Chelsea when he joined both financially and in terms of league position his CV will be right, but right now I would have thought someone with the likes of Southampton, Stoke, West Brom or Burnley on their CV's who helped them grow from a Championship side to a competitive Premiership side would have the right CV.
That isn't to say he doesn't know what he's doing/isn't the right person for the job - If we applied the same criteria to managers we would never have appointed some of our most successful managers who had little/no experience i.e. Mark McGhee, Alan Pardew & Brian McDermott (Excluding Coppell who definitely had the right CV).

On the manager front, Gourlay and co should really look at our history and think about developing our next manager from within as that's worked quite well in the past, Someone who knows the club and the players (including the youth players coming through) and can get the best out of them rather than a newbie who needs 3 or 4 transfer windows to rebuild the squad.

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Stranded » 27 Sep 2018 09:10

URZZZZZZZZ wrote:If (and it’s a big if), the club needed an overhaul from top to bottom, then it’s important that the fans have some patience with the new regime.

That said, I can’t get my head around just how much regression has taken place across all areas of the club since the change of CEO was made. I appreciate there may be an element of one step back before we can make two steps forward, but how far back do we need to go before we can start progressing?


Honest question here but what is the actual evidence of regression across all areas of the club since the change of CEO?


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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by URZZZZZZZZ » 27 Sep 2018 13:51

Stranded wrote:
URZZZZZZZZ wrote:If (and it’s a big if), the club needed an overhaul from top to bottom, then it’s important that the fans have some patience with the new regime.

That said, I can’t get my head around just how much regression has taken place across all areas of the club since the change of CEO was made. I appreciate there may be an element of one step back before we can make two steps forward, but how far back do we need to go before we can start progressing?


Honest question here but what is the actual evidence of regression across all areas of the club since the change of CEO?


On the pitch is quite self explanatory given last season and the lacklustre performances this season (last two Saturdays aside).

Commercially we are haemorrhaging fans. Whilst this could be linked to the football, it doesn’t seem like there is any plan for how we promote ourselves to the wider audience. I used to get tonnes of emails from the club with information, I can’t remember the last time I received one.

Boxes seem to be empty and sponsors are disappearing. A friend of a friend who works in the Megastore said they had to write of 1,000s of shirts last years because they didn’t sell.

The Academy for all intents and purposes sound like it has gone to pot completely.

It doesn’t seem like the club is in a good place at the moment.

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by RoyalBlue » 27 Sep 2018 14:10

URZZZZZZZZ wrote:
Stranded wrote:
URZZZZZZZZ wrote:If (and it’s a big if), the club needed an overhaul from top to bottom, then it’s important that the fans have some patience with the new regime.

That said, I can’t get my head around just how much regression has taken place across all areas of the club since the change of CEO was made. I appreciate there may be an element of one step back before we can make two steps forward, but how far back do we need to go before we can start progressing?


Honest question here but what is the actual evidence of regression across all areas of the club since the change of CEO?


On the pitch is quite self explanatory given last season and the lacklustre performances this season (last two Saturdays aside).

Commercially we are haemorrhaging fans. Whilst this could be linked to the football, it doesn’t seem like there is any plan for how we promote ourselves to the wider audience. I used to get tonnes of emails from the club with information, I can’t remember the last time I received one.

Boxes seem to be empty and sponsors are disappearing. A friend of a friend who works in the Megastore said they had to write of 1,000s of shirts last years because they didn’t sell.

The Academy for all intents and purposes sound like it has gone to pot completely.

It doesn’t seem like the club is in a good place at the moment.


The lack of emails to you might be down to GDPR and you not opting in to receive emails.

Serves them right over the shirts as they steadfastly refused to discount them by a significant amount as last season petered (crashed) out, We wanted to buy one to send to a friend in the US but weren't prepared to pay nearly full price when they so soon would be replaced by a new design.

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Nameless » 27 Sep 2018 14:16

I get a couple of emails a week at least with info about forthcoming games.

I think the unanswered question is whether any perceived decline is directly linked to Gourlay being appointed or whether he came in at a point where there were already issues (if these issues are more than anecdotal).
Support is clearly down (100% due to performance on the pitch I would suggest, the marketing efforts in terms of pricing, special deals etc have been immense and possible better than any other club in the country and if they were not started under Gourlay they have certainly been maintained under him)
Shirts being written off, that would tie in with lower crowds directly. Thousands being written off sounds very high. Did that represent lower sales than previously or someone over ordering ?
Reduced advertising and box sales again will relate to us being less high profile and also due to the nature of the town. I would imagine traditionally these things were taken up by 'local boy made good' businesses and we're a town with huge numbers of big multinationals. They will take clients to big matches but currently our poor performances must make us a tricky 'treat' for MDs to offer to prospective clients.
I think we are clearly in a period of transition. Still no real evidence that making Gourlay the fall guy holds much water, especially as Howe and Madejski were cast in exactly the same mould for many years.
I'd say we need to look again in 12 months, progress should be tangible by then. You can't spend 3 years making changes without getting some results.

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Stranded » 27 Sep 2018 15:07

URZZZZZZZZ wrote:
Stranded wrote:
URZZZZZZZZ wrote:If (and it’s a big if), the club needed an overhaul from top to bottom, then it’s important that the fans have some patience with the new regime.

That said, I can’t get my head around just how much regression has taken place across all areas of the club since the change of CEO was made. I appreciate there may be an element of one step back before we can make two steps forward, but how far back do we need to go before we can start progressing?


Honest question here but what is the actual evidence of regression across all areas of the club since the change of CEO?


On the pitch is quite self explanatory given last season and the lacklustre performances this season (last two Saturdays aside).

Commercially we are haemorrhaging fans. Whilst this could be linked to the football, it doesn’t seem like there is any plan for how we promote ourselves to the wider audience. I used to get tonnes of emails from the club with information, I can’t remember the last time I received one.

Boxes seem to be empty and sponsors are disappearing. A friend of a friend who works in the Megastore said they had to write of 1,000s of shirts last years because they didn’t sell.

The Academy for all intents and purposes sound like it has gone to pot completely.

It doesn’t seem like the club is in a good place at the moment.


Crowds are always linked to performances. We've barely won at home in 2018, so people stop coming. Fact of life. The deals the club offer are pretty damn decent - bring a mate for a tenner to midweek games is a great deal for example. As someone else mentioned, I get emails almost weekly from the club reminding me to get tickets for this game or here is an offer for that game. If the team start to perform at home, crowds will pick up and then so will the sundry income i.e. megastore sales.

I can't speak for the Academy but we are only dealing with anecdotal evidence at the moment. The teams are doing OK and there have been adverts out this week for a performance analyst so seems things are going on there to improve the situation.

It honestly feels to me like the club is just going through a transition period. We have had too many owners of late and a a result there are most likey pockets of people brought in my different teams not working in the right direction. The current owners appear to be in it for the long haul and Gourlay has been tasked with getting the background sorted and pull all these departments together - this sort of change will always feel like a mess from the outside as you only hear snippets (and these will always be negative) without having sight of the strategy that Gourlay will be working too.

It may well be wrong, Gourlay may be the wrong man but this is what seems to be happening and it needs time to actually be completed - a change of CEO again now would put us back to square one as he/she starts the process all over again.


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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Elm Park Kid » 29 Sep 2018 22:45

I got an email from an insider at the club earlier in the week.

Apparently there's this new FIFA 19 game out and you can ' experience authenticity like never before. '

Don't want to give any clues that would identify the sender - all I can say is he/she has the initials 'RFC'.

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by strap » 08 Oct 2018 13:17

Snowflake Royal wrote:All is far from well? No shit, we've won 2 games in 9 and have spent most of the last 5 years at the wrong end of the table.


Alright calm down. I was merely offering corroboration to the generality of the foregoing! Jeez! :roll:

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by John Smith » 08 Oct 2018 13:47

strap wrote:
Snowflake Royal wrote:All is far from well? No shit, we've won 2 games in 9 and have spent most of the last 5 years at the wrong end of the table.


Alright calm down. I was merely offering corroboration to the generality of the foregoing! Jeez! :roll:

Old Man Andrews wrote:

Old Man Andrews, do these two muppets quoted above go?

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Old Man Andrews » 08 Oct 2018 13:53

John Smith wrote:
strap wrote:
Snowflake Royal wrote:All is far from well? No shit, we've won 2 games in 9 and have spent most of the last 5 years at the wrong end of the table.


Alright calm down. I was merely offering corroboration to the generality of the foregoing! Jeez! :roll:

Old Man Andrews wrote:

Old Man Andrews, do these two muppets quoted above go?


I don't think Ian Royal goes. As much as I disagree with more or less everything he has ever said he seems like a reasonable guy.

I don't know Strap but for me he can go.


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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by Hitchytwo » 08 Oct 2018 14:16

sandman wrote:My first rumour report - water is wet.

Sandman, Water is not wet. Something has to be covered in water to be wet. Water cannot be covered in water. You should check your sources. :wink:

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Re: My first rumour report. Things not well at Reading.

by 2 world wars, 1 world cup » 08 Oct 2018 20:38

RoyalBlue wrote:
URZZZZZZZZ wrote:
Stranded wrote:
Honest question here but what is the actual evidence of regression across all areas of the club since the change of CEO?


On the pitch is quite self explanatory given last season and the lacklustre performances this season (last two Saturdays aside).

Commercially we are haemorrhaging fans. Whilst this could be linked to the football, it doesn’t seem like there is any plan for how we promote ourselves to the wider audience. I used to get tonnes of emails from the club with information, I can’t remember the last time I received one.

Boxes seem to be empty and sponsors are disappearing. A friend of a friend who works in the Megastore said they had to write of 1,000s of shirts last years because they didn’t sell.

The Academy for all intents and purposes sound like it has gone to pot completely.

It doesn’t seem like the club is in a good place at the moment.


The lack of emails to you might be down to GDPR and you not opting in to receive emails.

Serves them right over the shirts as they steadfastly refused to discount them by a significant amount as last season petered (crashed) out, We wanted to buy one to send to a friend in the US but weren't prepared to pay nearly full price when they so soon would be replaced by a new design.


= Now poor marketing ability
= Regression in that department
= In keeping with original statement

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