READING FC could be ready to offer long-time target Nelson Oliveira an escape route from Norwich City.

Royals boss Jose Gomes is a big admirer of his fellow Portuguese countryman and spoke about his alleged interest after Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at Derby County.

Oliveira, 27, has not featured at all for promotion-chasing Canaries this season amid rumours of a fall out with manager Daniel Farke.

Reading are thought to have held talks with Oliveira’s representatives ahead of a possible medical at the club's Hogwood Park training ground, although the Chronicle understands a deal is not imminent at this point. 

Gomes admitted: “I know this player very well. In Portugal at one time everybody thought he could be our first striker in the national team, but this season he’s not playing.”

Championship rivals Middlesbrough and Swansea City have also been linked with the Norwich striker who was a £5m signing from Benfica in August 2016.

Oliveira was first linked with Royals back in summer 2017 when Jaap Stam was manager, but a move never materialised.

Meanwhile, out-of-favour Royals striker Marc McNulty is expected to leave the club before the January transfer deadline, with League One Sunderland showing keen interest signing the 26-year-old Scotsman on loan.

Reading centre-back Tiago Ilori is also a target for his former club Sporting Lisbon amid unconfirmed rumours of a failed £1.5m bid, while reports suggest Wigan Athletic had a £450,000 offer for Tyler Blackett recently turned down.