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👕 Latest Academy graduates presented with debut shirts

Newest senior debutants enshrined on Honours Board

4 February 2020

All five players who have made their senior debut for the Royals this season have taken their place on our Academy Honours Board at Madejski Stadium, and have also been presented with their framed debut shirts as mementos from an extremely important day in their young careers.

Academy Manager, Michael Gilkes was on hand to present each of our debutants with their shirts in front of the Honours Board, which you can find in the walkway to the main entrance at Madejski Stadium.

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Following his first outing in a senior shirt in the Carabao Cup back in August, Akin Odimayo was presented with his shirt alongside Michael Gilkes in front of the Academy Honours Board.

Odimayo has since taken in senior experience with a loan spell at Hungerford Town in non-league, as well as lining up for our Under-23s 11 times this season.

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Our next debutant for the senior side came in January, as Andre Burley started in the Royals' Emirates FA Cup Third Round tie against Blackpool at Madejski Stadium.

He impressed on debut for the Royals in RG2, and subsequently was able to keep his place for the replay up at Bloomfield Road - playing 87 minutes as the Royals kept a clean sheet and advanced to Round Four. 

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A defender who made his senior debut by coming on for Burley against Blackpool, Ramarni Medford-Smith was rewarded after being one of the Under-23s' most 'capped' players over the last couple of seasons.

The full-back came on and showed his versatility by filling in at centre-half for the final few minutes against Blackpool in RG2, following on from a successful loan spell earlier on in the season in the National League with Torquay United.

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In Reading's replay win over Blackpool in the FA Cup, another debutant was crowned for the Royals - as England youth international defender Jeriel Dorsett took to the turf for the young Royals at Bloomfield Road for the closing stages of the action.

His contribution in the final few minutes helped the Royals hold onto their 2-0 advantage against Blackpool, and Dorsett currently holds the distinction of being the only player this season to play minutes for Reading's Under-18s, Under-23s and first team.

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Last but certainly not least, a striker who has shown his prolific qualities at Under-23 level was also rewarded with a senior Reading debut in the Fourth Round of the FA Cup, as Ben House came on as a second-half substitute against Cardiff City.

In freak circumstances, though, House's debut would unfortunately be cut short on the day. With the sending off of Tom McIntyre, he was the unlucky player to then be withdrawn as the Royals had to change to a more defensive formation.

Having now sealed a loan move to the National League with Dagenham and Redbridge, we wish Ben the best of luck in continuing his development in senior football.

Congratulations to each of our newest Academy graduates on their fantastic achievement!

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