Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

McDermott praises his Russian owner

Brian McDermott, pictured, has heaped praise on owner Anton Zingarevich

Reading boss Brian McDermott has praised the passion and togetherness Russian owner Anton Zingarevich brings to the Madejski Stadium.

With Zingarevich's compatriot Roman Abramovich wielding his axe yet again at Chelsea, as Roberto Di Matteo became the eighth boss to come and go at Stamford Bridge since the oligarch took charge, there has been criticisms of foreign owners seemingly being unwilling to offer managers time to achieve stability.

But McDermott was praised by Zingarevich ahead of Reading's first league win of the season against Everton last weekend and the Royals' manager reckons unity is important for a successful football club. "The owner, the chairman, the board, the director of football, everyone is in it together, that is my view," McDermott said.

"He wanted to make it clear, he spoke to me before the game and said he had done a bit with the papers, he wanted to make that clear to me and I appreciate the sentiment.

"If you have a situation where you have an owner and there is a 'him and us' - I don't think that works. Anton is very much part of what we are trying to do here, he is one of us. He came to pre-season with us and joined in and was very much a part of it - we have dialogue all of the time and it is very much everyone together, including the owner."

Zingarevich has been involved with Reading since the turn of the year and completed a protracted takeover in May when the Royals had secured a return to the Barclays Premier League.

McDermott has always eluded to his good working relationship and understanding with the Russian but admitted that, while it may be a different story for other clubs, there is no right or wrong way to approach things.

He said: "There might be other owners who might say 'you have to play such-and-such' I have heard that before but I don't know if its true but he wouldn't put me in that situation and I wouldn't expect an owner to put a manger in a situation like that.

"Everyone is different, Chelsea have been successful in a short period of time, without the owner at Chelsea they wouldn't have won the trophies they have won so I'm sure the fans at Chelsea are appreciative of the owner coming in and doing what he's done.

"You have to say the job that Robbie (Di Matteo) did for Chelsea was incredible, the fact they won the Champions League and FA Cup, amazing last season. What he did as a manager was just incredible and he will go down in history as one of the greats at Chelsea on the back of that and rightly so."

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