Academy coach thrilled with Samuel
Assistant Academy manager David Dodds was naturally pleased to see Dominic Samuel make his first team and Premier League debut last night.
The 18-year-old Academy product was introduced to the top flight fray as a substitute - replacing Garath McCleary with just under 20 minutes of play left at Sunderland last night.
It caps an excellent year for the youngster. As readingfc.co.uk wrote this week
, Dominic successfully progressed from the Academy to the under-21s team - excelling in a number of games and earned call-ups to England's U19s squad.
Dodds has seen Samuel develop through the Academy - and was proud to see him break through.
"That's what it's all about," he said. "We have a great group of youngsters and he's a young lad who has done really well.
"It's great for our young sides to do well in the league but the most important thing is to continuously see the lads breaking through into the first team.
"We hope that he's not the only one to play for the first team this season. It's fantastic to see - and credit to Brian McDermott for having faith in the young lads."
The striker joins a long list of players, including Jem Karacan, Alex Pearce and Simon Church, who have made the transition from Academy to first team - and Dodds thinks highly of Dominic and says his development certainly hasn't finished.
"He's a late developer in some ways and I think there's even more development in him," he added.
"He's got a great eye for goal, terrific pace and holds the ball up well and we're delighted to see him do well."