This week marks the EFL's Youth Development Week, in which clubs across the country celebrate the successes of the players to have made it through their youth ranks.
- An open letter from the CEO
- In-store Flash Sale in the Megastore
- Buy tickets for Reading vs Birmingham City
Here at Reading, we can argue to have had more success than most in bringing through bright young talent and leading them to success as senior players.
So in the week where players who have been 'Raised by the EFL' are put front and centre, we thought we would show off the successes of the Reading Academy since its inception back in 1998...
1359 (+569) appearances
The total number of senior appearances by Reading Academy graduates is edging ever-nearer to the 2,000 mark, with 65 total appearances coming from within our youth ranks so far this season, 51 of which have been starting places.
Academy graduates of the Royals have scored 219 times in a Reading shirt to date, with Shane Long topping the list at 54. Some crucial strikes have been taken by our Academy players over the years, including a vital Play-Off Semi-Final goal from Jordan Obita back in 2017.
We've had 49 players come out of our Academy and make their senior debuts as Royals, two of which coming this season in the form of centre-backs, Gabriel Osho and Tom McIntyre. Eight players have made their senior debuts since the start of the 2017-18 campaign in the blue and white of Reading.
6 Royal centurions
Of the 49 graduates to date, six have gone all the way to becoming centurions with the club. Alex Pearce, Jem Karacan, Hal Robson-Kanu, Shane Long, Jordan Obita and Simon Church have all crossed the 100-appearance barrier after coming out of our Academy. Of the current crop, Liam Kelly is closest to being the next to achieve that landmark - having made 91 appearances for the first team so far.
240 - our most capped man
Alex Pearce counts himself as Reading's most 'capped' Academy player, breaking through the youth setup and becoming a near-permanent fixture in the Reading squad, making 240 appearances in total - starting a remarkable 228 of them.
8 years old
Our three most recent Academy graduates, Tom Holmes, Tom McIntyre and Gabe Osho, have all been with the club right from the very start - joining our youth setup at the age of 8, working their way up all through the age groups and making their senior debuts.
16 years, 359 days
While he isn't the youngest-ever debutant for the Royals (Peter Castle holds that distinction), at the age of 16 years, 359 days old, Danny Loader became the first player to play for Reading to be born in the new millennium when he came off the bench against Millwall, in the Carabao Cup in August 2017.
4 Player of the Season winners
The Reading FC Player of the Season award is a high honour within the history of the club - and four Academy graduates have managed to win it. Gylfi Sigurðsson, Alex Pearce, Shane Long and Jordan Obita have all taken the honour for their performances over the course of a campaign.
1 Eamonn Dolan
There's only one Eamonn Dolan. Our late Academy Manager oversaw the development of hundreds of players after taking the helm of the club's Academy, offering an environment with a clear path to first team football. He led the Academy as our Under-21s won the Premier League Cup back in 2014, and he tragically passed away in June 2016. Always in our hearts.