Reading have had their fair share of players that will be fondly remembered for their services at the Madejski Stadium.
One team that are likely to be top of that list are the promotion-winning 2005/06 team under the management of Steve Coppell.
The Royals won promotion into the Premier League for the first time in their history in that campaign, with a number of players going on to impress for the Berkshire-based side in the top-flight.
Reading finished eighth in the Premier League the following season, with the large majority of the promotion-winning squad adjusting surprisingly well to the demands of football amongst England’s elite.
One player that impressed in his time with the Royals was James Harper, with the midfielder making over 300 appearances in total for the club since arriving at the Madejski Stadium in 2001 from Arsenal, having failed to break into the Gunners’ first-team on a consistent basis.
Harper caught the eye with a number of strong performances for Reading in the top-flight as well, including a memorable display against Liverpool in a 3-1 win for the Royals, with the midfielder scoring the final goal on the night, as he rounded Pepe Reina to fire home, which sparked jubilant scenes amongst the club’s supporters.
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Harper left the club at the end of the 2009/10 season, and went on to sign for Sheffield United. His spell with the Blades wasn’t as much of a success as his time with the Royals, as he left after two years with the club, before joining Hull City.
As his playing career headed towards the later stages, Harper has dropped down the leagues in search of regular game time, and that’s something that he’s managed to find.
The midfielder has been previously been on the books with the likes of Hayes & Yeading, Hendon and Gosport Borough, but is now playing his football for Uxbridge.
At the age of 40, Harper’s experience will certainly come in handy with the non-league side, and he clearly feels as though he can still offer something to their team.
The former Reading midfielder is showing that age is just a number when it comes to your playing career, and he’ll be hoping to continue to showcase his quality as this year’s campaign continues.