Apr 17, 2012, 6:26 PM EDT
After four seasons in the second division, Reading has clinched their return to the Premier League. Their 1-0 victory over Nottingham Forest on Tuesday left the Royal’s eight points clear of third-place West Ham United.
Fans reacted with mild elation:
That’s Mikele Leigertwood, the man who scored the goal that sent Reading up. His 81st minute strike from close range, coupled with West Ham’s 1-1 draw at Bristol City, clinched a top-two finish, earning the Roylas the right to fight for their lives in 2012-13.
The last time Reading was in the Premier Leargue, Marcus Hanhemann was on the team. So was Bobby Convey, as were Kevin Doyle, Shane Long, Nicky Shorey, Dave Kitson and Stephen Hunt, all of whom have since moved on. The players who have keyed this year’s run: Adam La Fondre (11 goals), Jimmy Kebe (10 assists), Alex Pearce (who’s played ever minute in defense), and Adam Federici (goalkeeper behind the league’s best defense).
In their 141-year history, Reading’s spent two seasons in the top flight, remarkably finishing eighth in 2006-07, the season after earning promotion. They fell to 18th in 2007-08, relegated with what now seems a remarkable 41 points.
Now, they sit on 88 after get two matches to bask in their success. They’re three up on Southampton, who can clinch their place in next year’s Premier League with a win on Saturday at Middlesbrough. West Ham United, who have way too much talent to be facing another year in the Championship, look set for the four-team playoff that will decide the third promoted club.
Other likely playoff clubs: Birmingham City, Blackpool, Cardiff City.
But that’s then, this is now, a now that belongs to Reading.
Jul 25, 2014, 1:21 AM EDT
Olmes Garcia’s second half double lifted RSL.
Jul 24, 2014, 11:25 PM EDT
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Jul 24, 2014, 10:24 PM EDT
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Jul 24, 2014, 9:16 PM EDT
Reds’ owner does not want a repeat of last year’s weaknesses.
Jul 24, 2014, 8:02 PM EDT
NBC Sports and Fathom Events are taking Premier League soccer to the big screen.
Jul 24, 2014, 7:10 PM EDT
Balotelli, Honda, Muntari, and more from the Rossoneri’s N.Y. training.
Jul 24, 2014, 7:04 PM EDT
Pinto will depart after failing to come to new terms with the federation.
Jul 24, 2014, 6:12 PM EDT
After appearing three times at Brazil 2014, Besic is set to add depth behind Gareth Barry and James McCarthy.
Jul 24, 2014, 5:21 PM EDT
Adu close to joining the 10th club in his 11-year career.
Jul 24, 2014, 4:08 PM EDT
After seeing time with the senior squad, 18-year-old prospect will be sidelined indefinitely.
Jul 24, 2014, 3:25 PM EDT
The Colombian striker takes a few hacks before AS Monaco’s friendly in Miami against Atletico National.
Jul 24, 2014, 2:50 PM EDT
Limited to just 16 matches last year after his big transfer from Liverpool to West Ham, Carroll is battling another ailment this season.
Jul 24, 2014, 2:09 PM EDT
The rags-to-riches defender steps away from the pitch, at least as a player, while reflecting on his career journey from North America to Europe and back.
Jul 24, 2014, 1:46 PM EDT
Herrera chats exclusively to PST: “If we are a humble team and we work hard, we will achieve our objectives and we will win trophies.”
Jul 24, 2014, 1:26 PM EDT
His dad played for El Tri, but California-born Fernando Arce Jr says his U-20 bow with the States makes him an American player “forever”
Jul 24, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT
Aston Villa, Manchester United and Manchester City all cruised, while Spurs had to find a late winner after coughing up a two-goal lead.
Jul 24, 2014, 12:47 PM EDT
What about the Premier League? Bundesliga? Serie A?
Jul 24, 2014, 12:15 PM EDT
Goran Milanovic is hoping the former American prodigy chooses to revitalize his career with FK Jagodina in the Serbian top flight.
Jul 24, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT
One of the best stories is United States men’s soccer history is about to move past the “playing career” chapter.
Jul 24, 2014, 11:47 AM EDT
How big of a deal is the Chelsea legend signing for New York City FC? It’s up there.
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