Boost for Royals' Irish star Quinn in fitness battle
There's some good news for crocked Ireland man Stephen Quinn as the Reading player is making good progress in his fitness battle.
Quinn has been sidelined since mid-September and needed surgery on a knee problem, an injury which also forced Quinn to miss the key games in Ireland's Euro 2016 qualification bid. He had been ruled out of action for months but Royals boss Steve Clarke says that three of his injured players, including Quinn, are doing well.
"They're all progressing well," said Clarke. "Stephen Quinn is coming along nicely, but they're all progressing well and working well. I think Stephen will be running outside [the gym] next week and hopefully I'll have them all before the turn of the year."
Martin O'Neill is a big fan of midfielder Quinn, who started in the qualifiers away to Georgia and Germany and also featured away to Scotland and Gibraltar, and Roy Keane last week reassured the injured Quinn that he remained in the manager's plans for Euro 2016.
Meanwhile, midfielder Josh Cullen wants to bring his good form with Ireland's U21 side into the club scene with West Ham.
The 19-year-old has impressed for the Irish U21s but has struggled to get game-time with the Hammers, having had his Premier League debut in August. "I'm very pleased to be playing for Ireland and doing well, I enjoy going away with them. To get that feedback and recognition is always nice, now it's about me kicking on and trying to get into the first team here," says Cullen.
"It's a challenge, but one I look forward too, you can always learn from the players that are here as well. You can always take tips from them and that helps to prove to people that I am good enough to play in the first team."