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Gylfi Sigurdsson




Date of birth






In 2005, Sigurdsson was brought to the Royals Academy on a scholarship, where he would spend his first three years playing for the youth and reserve teams.

He signed professionally before the start of the 2007/08 season along with five other Academy youngsters.

Briefly appearing in the cup as a substitute under Steve Coppell, he would have to wait for Brendan Rodgers to hand him his debut start in which he scored in a 5-1 drubbing of Burton Albion at Madejski Stadium in 2008.

In a change of management, the Icelander scored in Brian McDermott’s first home game in charge – a 1-1 draw with Swansea City. But it was a sensational FA Cup run that helped Sigurdsson embark on a swift rise to fame at Reading Football Club.

It all began at Anfield, when he stroked home a 90th minute equaliser to take the tie into extra time. Liverpool were dumped out and Shane Long and Sigurdsson scored late at home to top flight Burnley in the Second Round.

Momentum was building and twice West Brom led the Royals in a Fifth Round replay at the Hawthorns, but twice Reading levelled and it took an extra time strike from Sigurdsson to earn McDermott’s men a place in the quarter-finals.

Unsurprisingly named Player of the Season, he reached 20 goals for the campaign when he scored in our final day 4-1 win over Preston and had become an Iceland international in the process, but with no top six spot secured, the midfielder was sold for a club record fee to enable the squad to properly rebuild.

Bundesliga high-flyers Hoffenheim were the lucky recipients, but Gylfi was soon back in English football, gracing the Premier League at Swansea on loan and then Spurs.

The former Crewe and Shrewsbury loanee had won every heart in Madejski Stadium, and is still celebrated by supporters who dream of the day he returns as a Royal.