Reading boss Steve Coppell has no regrets signing African players as he prepares to lose Ibrahima Sonko (Senegal), Emerse Fae (Ivory Coast) and Andre Bikey (Cameroon) to the African Nations Cup this month.

"When you sign an African player, you know there's a good chance that you're going to lose him for two or three weeks or a month," Coppell said. "It's no big deal, you just schedule it into your plans.

"I wouldn't want to have seven or eight African players. But they have brought so much to our game and you have to recognise that. They are terrific players, good athletes and bring a different brand of football to what is a highly pressured situation."