Roberts raring to go

Ice-cool Roberts confident Royals are warming to their task

Last Updated: 26/01/13 5:26pm

Striker Jason Roberts hopes to inspire Reading to a lengthy FA Cup run on his return from injury.

"Now we are playing a little more defensive minded, playing 4-5-1 in the majority of games, keeping it tighter and we are starting to keep ourselves in games and go ahead and win."

Jason Roberts

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Roberts, who celebrated his 35th birthday on Friday, is currently out of action with a hip problem.

But he told Soccer AM that he has taken motivation from the giant-killing feats of League Cup finalists Bradford during in his time on the sidelines and that he has his sights set on another final appearance.

Reflecting on Bradford's 4-3 aggregate victory over Aston Villa in the League Cup semi-final, he said: "At Wigan we got to a League Cup final [in 2006] when no-one thought we could.

"What Bradford have been able to do has been fantastic - I think we've all been cheering that. They've been absolutely sensational.

"That's what these cup competitions are all about and when you watch them, I think anyone who gets cynical about football you know what it's all about.

"I think everybody's been inspired by what Bradford and other teams have done in the past. You watch Bradford and what it means to them, the way they have overcome the odds.

"I think anybody who loves football would be happy to see that and I certainly have been; although big teams have lost to them, it's been great to watch!"


Roberts - who hopes to return to action in "about a month" - told Max and Helen that Reading have become more defensive-minded in their battle to avoid Premier League relegation.

The Royals are currently third from bottom, but are only one point off safety and Roberts is confident that the club's fortunes are back on the up after back-to-back top-flight wins against West Brom and Newcastle.

"We started off scoring a lot of goals and playing very entertaining football but we found ourselves on the wrong end of a few results," he said.

"Now we are playing a little more defensive minded, playing 4-5-1 in the majority of games, keeping it tighter and we are starting to keep ourselves in games and go ahead and win.

"I think we've won the last two games and we are unbeaten in four or five, so it's starting to turn around for us now.

"We want to be successful. I don't go home thinking 'I scored today' or 'we played entertaining football which was good for everyone to watch'. We want to win games.

"If that means we've got to close games down and make it a little more boring, then we'll definitely do that."


For now Roberts is focused on rehabilitation - although he admitted that he isn't too hot on using iced baths!

"I've been staying away from them because I'm not the best at them," he said. "I'm not a fan. When I was playing I was doing it all of the time after training - sometimes before training. I find it helps. Some people don't like it but it works for me.

"It's painful - it's around 7.5 degrees - and you've got to work your way into it. If I don't do it for a couple of weeks, when you go back in you've got to start with a minute and build yourself up.

"The sports scientist guys tell me it's supposed to regenerate your muscles and calm down all of the inflammation. I don't know if I believe it. I just kind of do all the stuff they tell me."

The Jason Roberts Foundation (JRF) will take on the Sodje Sports Foundation (SSF) on May 27 to raise money for the Damilola Taylor Trust and Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust. For more information about the JRF, visit