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19 July 2016

Mikele returns to Reading to replace departing Mullins as Academy Loan Manager

Reading Football Club would like to wish Hayden Mullins the very best of luck in his new role as Under-21 Assistant Coach at Watford Football Club, leaving his role within our Academy to take up a position at Vicarage Road.

However, after Mullins left for pastures new at the end of last week, the club are delighted to now be able to announce that immediately replacing Hayden in the role within our Category One set-up will be Mikele Leigertwood – the man who heroically scored the goal against Nottingham Forest four years ago which sealed our promotion to the Premier League.

A true fans’ favourite, Leigertwood first arrived at Reading on loan from QPR in 2010 and his commanding midfield presence led Reading to Wembley and a play-off final against Swansea City.

He subsequently signed a permanent deal at Madejski Stadium that summer and the following season Mikele earned the glory his performances warranted.

Finding the net against Southampton, Leicester City, Blackpool and not forgetting the fantastic fourth at Upton Park…he then scored that hooked finish at home to Forest which took the Royals back into the top flight and ultimately earned us the Championship title in 2011-12.

Vivid memories remain of the midfield maestro being held aloft in a pitch invasion that swept our match-winner off his feet and carried him back down the tunnel.

He made more than 100 appearances for the club as a player and, having recently hung up his boots due to injury, Leigertwood is a Royal once more as he takes up the position of Academy Loan Manager.

Mikele will now help to implement the Academy Loan Strategy in accordance with the EPPP, ensuring our loan players maximise their learning experiences when they spend time with other teams away from Madejski Stadium.

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