Reading owner gives backing to McDermott
Reading owner Anton Zingarevich has dismissed claims he plans to replace manager Brian McDermott, and promised the incumbent full control of signings.
Reports in the build-up to Reading's 2-1 win over Everton had claimed Zingarevich was lining up Dick Advocaat to take charge of the team, while also suggesting the Russian owner had drawn up a list of his own transfer targets. The 30-year-old Zingarevich denied both suggestions.
"The speculation hurts me because it's just not necessary," said Zingarevich, in comments reported by the Daily Telegraph. "It is just nonsense really. I have total faith in McDermott and he has a long-term contract so I don't see any problem."
He added: "There will be funds available. There will be a list at some point and we will discuss it. But the manager is the manager. He will make the final decision on all transfers.
"I don't even know where that Dick Advocaat speculation came from. Of course Brian was hurt by it. But he knows from me - because we talk - that everything is fine."
The victory was Reading's first of the season and Zingarevich was full of praise for McDermott even with only goal difference keeping his club out of the drop zone.
"You can be a good coach without being the right manager - but he really is," he said. "To be a good manager, you have to be a good psychologist and I really think he is."
Zingarevich was said to have had a strong hand in bringing Russian striker Pavel Pogrebnyak - left out of the team on Saturday - to the club in the summer, and recent comments he made about another compatriot, Andriy Arshavin, led to claims he was driving the transfer policy at the Madejski Stadium.
But the owner played down his remarks.
"When asked about Arshavin, I said he's a good player," he said. "I never actually said that we are interested in signing him. It was in the Russian news. Basically, it was mistranslated."