Exceptional summer so farThere has certainly been no downtime at Reading FC this summer!
Once a season ends there is often a quiet period for some clubs, but that has been far from the case at Madejski Stadium as we very much build for the future.
Since the tail end of last season there has been positive news throughout; ranging from signing agreements with hugely experienced players, to developments over a new training ground, players on the international stage and much more besides. There are many reasons to be cheerful for the season ahead if you are a Reading fan.
The month started with confirmation of an offer made in principle for a new training ground at Bearwood, which is a vital step for the club's future. Many clubs are developing their training grounds and a state of the art facility is vital for our continued progress.
Soon afterwards our under 18s reached the final of the Barclays Academy Premier League, ending what was arguably the best ever season in our Academy's history. And as we aim for Category One EPPP status, our youth setup's standing was furthered when Alex McCarthy was called into the full England squad and experienced games at Wembley and the incredible Maracana in Brazil. As his coach Sal Bibbo rightly said, all praise goes to Alex for his achievement.
Madejski Stadium crowds hit half a million during the month, and we offered contracts to six players at the end of the season: Stuart Taylor; Jonathan Henly, Lawson D'Ath, Nick Arnold, Matt Partridge and Shane Griffin. A few days later eight Academy players entered discussions about professional contracts.
Jake Cooper was the first to sign his deal early in the month, and the England youth player is very well respected in our Academy setup so it was important to tie him down. Nigel Adkins then set out his goals as our season ticket prices were sent to supporters, aiming for 'a fantastic season to be a Reading supporter.'
Further afield we strengthened links with Oman, while Ryan Edwards scored in a build-up game following his important call-up for Australia's under 20 squad; his World Cup adventure is set to begin in the coming days.
Then our first transfer of the summer hit the headlines as former England man Wayne Bridge agreed a 12-month contract, bringing with him experience of both the international stage and Champions League, while he was crucially in the Championship team of the year last season.
Another defender put pen to paper as Nick Arnold signed for a year and agreed to join Wycombe on loan; an important step in his development, while 'keeper Mikkel Andersen could play in the Europa League after a loan to Randers FC.
Then the Championship season's fixtures and new kit details were confirmed as the season draws ever closer - and indeed season ticket renewals close on 28th June so time is ticking to book your seat at the best possible price.
Amidst this, Anton Zingarevich set out his desire to win the League and the boss spoke of his aim to score goals and entertain.
Then all of the above was followed up by yet more exciting news as former Real Madrid man Royston Drenthe agreed to join, then Alex Pearce signed a new contract until 2015, before American international midfielder Danny Williams arrived at Madejski Stadium. The club's summer hashtag #BuildEvolveSucceed has never seemed more appropriate.
Have you renewed your season ticket yet? Prices from only £16.30 per game for adults, £10 concessions and £5.43 for 16 & under. See more details herehttp://www.readingfcdirect.co.uk; call 0844 249 1871 to book or go to