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Page last updated at 17:52 GMT, Sunday, 11 May 2008 18:52 UK

Coppell dodges Reading exit talk

Reading manager Steve Coppell
Coppell will discuss his and the club's future in the next week

Reading manager Steve Coppell says he will not make an immediate decision over his future following the club's relegation from the Premier League.

"Inevitably at the end of every season there are always changes and there will be here, mainly due to financial matters," said the 52-year-old.

"But this isn't an occasion for thinking about me. We'll have a look forward some time this week I'm sure.

"I just want to congratulate my players for battling away all season."

He added: "I've been here for five years and the core of the team has stayed the same, they've done a lot for this club and they are feeling it in the pit of their stomach at the moment.


"It's been very difficult from the start but they've stuck at it and given it their all."

Coppell paid tribute to Fulham after the Cottagers' win at Portsmouth consigned his side to the drop despite a 4-0 win at Derby.

"Fulham have earned the right to still be in this league, no doubts," said Coppell.

"They have had some brilliant results recently, including at Portsmouth.

"In hindsight, all we can do really is congratulate Fulham. I guess they have put a real dampener on our day."

Coppell admitted his side could not have done any more themselves, but said before the game he felt victory at Derby might be enough to keep the Royals up.

The majority of the players involved for us this season will never play for Derby again

Derby manager Paul Jewell

He added: "It is quite hard to swallow at the moment. I had a feeling that if we won today we'd have a real chance of playing in this division next season.

"The players did everything we asked of them, they put in a good performance and could have scored more goals.

"But we had our opportunities. We lost both games to Fulham and Bolton, that has clearly cost us, as did not taking a point from Tottenham last week.

"The dressing-room is a sad and lonely place at the moment, even though there are many people in it."

Interview: Reading boss Steve Coppell

Derby boss Paul Jewell, who is still to taste victory at the club even though he has been there since November, said he was disgusted by the Rams display.

"I'm glad to see the back of this season, I'm so disappointed the way it's finished," he said.

"The majority of the players involved for us this season will never play for Derby again.

"We tried everything to get this group to perform but we've not been good enough and I include myself in that.

"We make basic errors and we are certainly nowhere near good enough for this league, what is worrying is that we aren't good enough for the level below either.

"The fans turned on the team today, they are angry and rightly so. I hope we can put this embarrassing season to bed."

see also
Derby 0-4 Reading
11 May 08 |  Premier League
Portsmouth 0-1 Fulham
11 May 08 |  Premier League
BBC pundits on the Premier League
11 May 08 |  Premier League
Premier League finale as it happened
11 May 08 |  Premier League
Premier League photos
11 May 08 |  Football

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