JOSE Gomes has told at least five Reading FC players their time at the club is up, writes Courtney Friday.

The Portuguese manager stressed he wants to reduce the size of Royals’ over-inflated squad as he prepares a massive overhaul this month.

The Reading Chronicle has learned that Dave Edwards, David Meyler, Vito Mannone and Marc McNulty have all been transfer listed.

Josh Sims has also been told he can return to Southampton only midway through a season-long loan.

The group has been removed from first-team affairs and have even been told they cannot eat with the rest of the squad, a source exclusive revealed.

The source added: “They are all good pros but the manager has told them they need to leave.”

All five players were left out of Gomes’ squad in the 2-0 defeat to Manchester United in the FA Cup on Saturday.

Former Welsh international and Wolverhampton Wanderers legend Edwards has been heavily linked with a move to Shrewsbury Town.

The Chronicle understands the 32-year-old midfielder is on the verge of a transfer after being frozen out since returning from a training-ground injury more than a month ago.

Reading Chronicle:

Reading manager, Jose Gomes.

However, McNulty, Meyler and Mannone all have at least 18 months left on their contracts and could prove more difficult for Reading to move on.

Royals’ boss was coy on naming individuals, stating he was working with fewer players and had “made some decisions”.

Pelle Clement was also told to leave the club but he has already secured a move to Holland to join former Royals boss Jaap Stam at Zwolle.

Meanwhile, Royals face a fight to keep hold of centre-back Tiago Ilori, who has been linked with a return to Portugal.

Gomes told Portuguese press that Ilori’s former club, Sporting Lisbon, are keen on the 25-year-old and it has also been reported that an initial bid was rejected.

Reading will be keen to recoup as much of the £4m they paid for the ex-Liverpool man back in January 2016 as they can.

Fellow defender Tyler Blackett has also been linked with Wigan Athletic, while on-loan midfielder Sims looks certain to return to parent club Southampton, possibly this week.

Gomes will be hoping Royals can build on their performance at Old Trafford on Saturday when they pushed Manchester United all the way in a 2-0 FA Cup defeat.

Reading, without a win in 11 league and cup matches, host Nottingham Forest this Saturday (3pm ko).