Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 28 December 2014

Adkins keen to keep McCarthy

Alex McCarthy is expected to attract a lot of attention this summer
Alex McCarthy is expected to attract a lot of attention this summer

Reading goalkeeper Alex McCarthy will attract plenty of attention over the summer but the club will not let him leave on the cheap, according to manager Nigel Adkins.

The 23-year-old McCarthy has earned plenty of plaudits over recent weeks and pulled off a number of impressive saves as the relegated Royals lost 2-0 to Manchester City. With the Berkshire club set to play npower Championship football next season, players such as McCarthy could well find themselves in demand, but Adkins wants to keep his first-choice goalkeeper at the Madejski Stadium and will not be forced to sell him.

"I'm sure there will lots of speculation," he said. "But we are in a good position in respect of the finances and there is good stability here. We're not looking to lose Alex and are looking to build for the future."

Former Southampton boss Adkins praised McCarthy's shot-stopping against managerless City but does not believe he is the complete package just yet.

"He made some excellent saves and he has demonstrated that now on a few times," Adkins added.

"We want to build and play from the back and one or two of his distribution choices weren't the greatest, but others were.

"We believe he can be a top-four keeper at international level and, if you can play out from the back, he can do that."

Reading have won just once since Adkins replaced former boss Brian McDermott in March but he is pleased with the progress his squad have made and felt they gave City a challenge.

"We want to build and play from the back and play through the field of play," he said. "From my point of view, everything is very positive moving forward and we have a lot of players who have won the Championship before.

"When we look at it, we played against a good side and we have to give them a lot of credit. They have had a lot of turmoil over the last couple of days and they gave it a real go. When we look at ourselves, the two goals we gave away... you can't defend like that. But we're looking to evolve and play a certain way of football."

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