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Tanner joins Pilgrims on loan

5 August 2015

Forward heading to Home Park for first team experience

Young Royals forward Craig Tanner has this afternoon signed a loan deal with League Two side Plymouth Argyle which will see him represent the Pilgrims until Sunday 3rd January 2016.

Reading manager Steve Clarke said, "We know that first team opportunities for Craig will be limited this year so we thought it best to get him out on loan again and give him more valuable experience with Plymouth Argyle, just as he did at AFC Wimbledon last season.

"He started his spell at Wimbledon very well but tailed off a little bit towards the end of their campaign, so this is another very good opportunity to make an impact in the environment of competitive first team football."

Craig first joined the Royals’ Academy ranks as an under-8 back in 2003 and he signed his first professional contract in February 2011 before impressing for our Under-18 and Under-21 sides.

The 20-year-old striker scored within minutes of making his Reading debut last season, notching the third goal in our 3-1 Capital One Cup win over Newport County in the opening week of the campaign.

He went on to make appearances from the bench in league encounters with Huddersfield, Nottingham Forest and Middlesbrough that same month and earned his first professional start in a cup win over Scunthorpe United at Glanford Park.

Tanner then spent the second half of the 2014-15 season on loan in League Two, enjoying more than four months of regular first team football with AFC Wimbledon – and now he will aim to get more minutes under his belt during his stay at Home Park.

It is important that we give our young players the opportunity to go out on loan, so they can come back as more experienced players, better prepared for first team football.

Midfielder Aaron Tshibola is the perfect example - last season he was away with Hartlepool United and, this summer, he has come back with us and has played a big part in our first team pre-season preparations ahead of the Championship campaign. This is why we continue to take the chance to give our young players the chance to go out.

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