Coppell praise for Bikey
By Andrew Scurr
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Steve Coppell has praised defender Andre Bikey for the impact he has made.
Reading boss Steve Coppell has praised defender Andre Bikey for the impact he has made in such a short time in England.
Bikey joined The Royals on loan from Lokomotiv Moscow in the summer and after initially struggling, has stepped up following the injury to Ibrahima Sonko.
The Cameroon stopper has drawn praise from Coppell for recent performances, and the manager is hoping for another solid display in the FA Cup on Saturday.
"Andre is from Cameroon, has played three years in Russia, and is only 22. For him to come in and be a part of what we are about in such a short space of time is a tremendous compliment to him," Coppell said.
"He has had teething problems but he is gradually overcoming them and is doing terrifically well. But he knows he has got a lot to learn and every game is a different kind of challenge.
"He had the big physical kind of challenge to deal with against John Carew last week. It was like a good wrestling match at various stages!
"This weekend I am sure will be a little bit different. This is all new to Andre, a fresh challenge, and he is the first to realise he has got a lot to learn - yet alone English.
"But from a football point of view he is soaking up knowledge as quickly as possible and he is doing alright."
Reading travel to face Manchester United in the fifth round of the FA Cup at Old Trafford on Saturday evening.
Coppell has vowed to attack the game as Reading aim to advance to the quarter finals for only the second time in the club's history.
"We will attack the game and if we had no desire to win we wouldn't have won the two previous rounds. One hundred per cent I want to win on Saturday," Coppell added.