Date:Wednesday January 31 2007
This transfer window has reminded me a lot of waiting for a bus, all of January I`ve waited and I`ve waited and then three of the f**kers turn up at once!
Without further ado, ladies and gents, I bring to you the new faces of Reading - and if Steve Coppell has his way there will be another one coming in today!
"We`ve still got one more deal to do I think, he`s a player who is with another club, so I don`t want to embarrass anyone by saying more than that."
Reports suggest it could be Stoke captain, Michael Duberry while an alleged offer of 3M was turned down by Luton Town for Leon Barnett, but I digress slightly:
Don`t you just love it when a plan comes together? After mucvh wrestling, pulling and tugging Reading have signed the Cork City centre back.
The 25-year-old Irishman left in the end for an undisclosed fee, though it is expected to be in the region of £200-300,000.
Bennett will join ex-teammates Kevin Doyle and Shane Long from the Eircom side and could get to feature very soon with Ibrahima Sonko injured for an as yet unknown time.
"He joins at a tremendously exciting time and we wish him all the very best for his career with us,' chairman John Madejski said of his arrival.
Director of Football, Nick Hammond commented: "We are delighted to have secured Alan's signature,'
'We became aware of Alan when we signed Kevin Doyle and Shane Long and have monitored his progress since then. It's a massive challenge for Alan."
And despite suggestions that Cork chairman Brian Lennox was fuming at Reading for twisting his arm into the deal Hammond suggested otherwise:
'The discussions with Cork City have been quite lengthy but always courteous and professional and we're happy that things have now been concluded."
Reading beat off last year`s Championship rivals Sheffield United with a big stick to bring Colchester`s Greg Halford to the Madejski Stadium.
The U`s defender went for a fee that is over 2.25million, the last Colchester Unite club record, a certain amount is not yet known but it is thought to be less then the 4million price tag Colchester gave the player.
Halford has signed up on a theree year deal till summer 2010 and due to the 22year-old capability to slot into many roles across midfield and defence he too could feature soon.
Hammond commented that: 'He is an outstanding talent and a typical 'Reading' signing - young, hungry and with the ability to become an even better player than he already is.
'With the help of our coaching staff, we hope that Greg can realise his considerable potential during his time at Reading.'
Steve Coppell also praised Halford`s characteristics and noted that his signing was a relief: "He`s our type of player, a certain age, not been there and done that so he`s got to prove himself. He`s got the ability to go and do it."
"It`s a massive amount of money for him, but that`s a reflection of the times. I said to him that he was getting more expensive every day! Every time we phoned it was an extra few bob!"
Ollie Bozanic fits the bill of the Reading team Steve Coppell is shaping up. The 18-year-old Australian has had trials with Reading in the past but only now has put pen to paper on a deal that will see him stay with Reading until 2009.
Hammond describes Bozanic as "A really gifted left footed player."
Bozanic has played for Australia in the under 20s team and also captained the under17s.
Bozanic was previously playing in the Australian A League for Central Coast Mariners.
18-year-old Mikkel Anderson was Reading`s first signing of the window, the young Danish keeper came from AB Copenhagen and cost somewhere about £100,000 pounds.
Viktor Illugason signed up to the club after a successful trial here.
The 16year old Norwegian has already featured in his Academy debut scoring in a 3-1 win over MK Dons.
Phew! And that`s that folks. For now anyway, expect to see if our last minute signing comes in right here at Vital Reading!
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