THE man behind the proposed take over of Reading FC is Russian tycoon Anton Zingarevich.

The 29-year-old looks set to close a deal that would see his newly-founded company, Thames Sports Investments, acquire a 51 per cent stake in the Championship club.

Royals boss Brian McDermott flew to Milan to meet the club's prospective owners on Tuesday to discuss team rebuilding.

It is believed McDermott was told his job is safe, and that money will be available to use in the transfer market.

A statement released by Reading FC today says the club expects the deal to be completed in March.

It continues: "The transaction, as agreed with Sir John Madejski, includes providing Reading Football Club with some limited funding now to enable Brian McDermott and Nick Hammond (director of football) to strengthen the playing squad during this January transfer window."

Reading are being strongly linked with a move for Blackburn's out-of-favour striker Jason Roberts.

Zingarevich was educated at a private school in the Reading area and went to Reading University. He then moved to New York to continue his university studies.

The take over will see Madejski remain as chairman of Reading until at least 2014, with a view to becoming life president when he decides to step down.

The Autotrader founder has been at the helm for 21 years, and built the stadium that bears his name.

Zingarevich's management consultants PWC are currently going through the process of due diligence which they expect to run smoothly.

The take over will Royals chief executive Nigel Howe remain in his position along with director of football Nicky Hammond.