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Academy

🔵 Beyond the Hoops | A look at the 2020-21 Season

How a selection of our former Academy graduates got on during the season that was

10 June 2021

As we continue to shine a light on our Academy as part of the EFL's Youth Development Week, we're taking a look at how some of our former Academy graduates got on during their respective 2020-21 campaigns.

Whether they're cutting it with the very best in the top flight, or perhaps playing abroad, take a look at the latest season's of players for whom it all began in Berkshire with the Royals.

Jem Karacan

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After signing a deal with the Irons in January, the Royals legend and former-midfielder spent the season turning out for League Two outfit Scunthorpe United. The Turkish 32-year-old made 24 appearances, helping his side narrowly avoid relegation from the Football League with a 22nd-placed finish. 

Hal Robson-Kanu

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Two goals in his final three games weren't enough to prevent the Baggies from dropping out of England's top tier, but Wales international Robson-Kanu played his part in 19 Premier League matches this season. His two late league goals, in addition to two Carabao Cup strikes in September were the products of a tough year with relegated West Brom.

Tariqe Fosu

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Fosu made 41 Championship appearances as Brentford brought an end to their play-off woes with victory over Swansea City at Wembley, sealing promotion to the top-flight in late May. The Ghanian scored on four occasions for Thomas Frank's Bees during 2020-21, and was additionally nominated for the PFA Player of the Month Award in January.

Liam Kelly

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On loan with the U's from Feyenoord, 25-year-old Irish man Kelly helped local neighbours Oxford United to a play-off spot during his year with them. Clocking up 34 appearances during the campaign, Kelly was a key part of the Oxford midfield, who in his absence suffered a play-off semi-final defeat to eventual victors Blackpool.

Gylfi Sigurdsson

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Gylfi's fourth season as a Toffee was another productive one. Everton may have fallen short of their hopes of European football with a 10th-placed finish, but Sigurdsson netted an impressive eight times in 45 appearances in all competitions from midfield. Still to this day the Icelanic star is a composed head in the middle of the park and a constant threat from set pieces.

Jack Stacey

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Defender Stacey made 32 Championship outings for the Cherries during Jonathan Woodgate's first season as boss. The 25-year-old netted once on the opening day of the season, and having helped Bournemouth to secure sixth spot, he played his part in both legs of the play-off semi-final as they lost out to winners Brentford. 

Jake Cooper

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Millwall regular Cooper enjoyed another strong season at The Den, making a total of 42 league appearances for Gary Rowett's men during 2020-21. Grabbing a single goal against Barnsley in October, the defensive rock helped his team to a top-half finish.

Andrija Novakovich

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Plying his trade overseas since his departure from Berkshire, Novakovich is with Italian Serie B side Frosinone, a side his return of 11 goals in 33 appearances aided to a 10th-placed finish. This season was the USA international's most productive since his time with Dutch outfit Telstar in 2017-18.

Rob Dickie

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Dickie has proved a hit at Loftus Road since he arrived from Oxford United last summer. Three goals in 43 Championship appearances saw him become one of the first names on Mark Warburton's teamsheet, and his form helped the R's to finish the latest campaign in ninth.

Dominic Samuel

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Despite being sidelined for three months of the season through injury, Samuel helped the Gills end 2020-21 10th in League One with six goals in 26 league and cup appearances. A decent return from his first season in Kent.

Aaron Tshibola

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Back with Kilmarnock during 2020-21 for his second spell in East Ayrshire, Tshibola was one of the standabout performers for Killie in a tough season that ended with relegation to the Scottish Championship via the play-offs. Three goals in 35 appearances from midfield wasn't enough to prevent the club from confirming his departure after they faced the drop.


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