Iconic Reading manager Brian McDermott can’t wait for Saturday’s “celebration of good people getting together.”

This weekend sees a team made up of Steve Coppell’s 2005/06 Championship-winning team face McDermott’s 2011/12 Championship-winning team to round off the season’s 150th anniversary celebrations.

Players are returning from all four corners of the globe to participate in the exciting occasion with a whole host of big names of Royals folklore.

“It’ll be nice to see everyone,” McDermott began. “We’ve got a good turnout, they all wanted to come, which is really nice. It’ll be great to see Steve’s team and my team, Nigel Gibbs, the staff, it’ll be nice to get everyone together again.

“It’s about getting everyone together and seeing everyone and remembering some good times.  I really enjoyed working with Steve and those players- it was brilliant to be a part of that. They were all just really decent people, people who all wanted to win and give their best. It’s a celebration of good people getting together.

“I speak to a lot of the boys; they’re always going to be friends. They’re a bunch of people you would want to be friends with. Both teams are an epitome of what a team should look like, really good individuals who can express themselves in a team shape.

“They were phenomenal people who didn’t know when they were beat- I have so much pride for both teams. It was a great time at Reading, 2000-2013, and it’ll be nice to see the same faces again.”

The former Arsenal midfielder spent more than 10 years working at the club in a wide range of roles, including first team manager from 2009-2013 and again in 2016.

Despite being one of the main attractions, along with the other returning guests, the former chief scout believes the credit should go to those organising the event- the Reading FC Former Players’ Association.


READ MORE: Legendary Reading FC kitman on organising legends reunion


“The people that have put this together have done an incredible job,” the 60-year-old started. “All we’re doing is turning up. Jason coming from Miami, the boys coming from Iceland, it tells you what it means to get this bunch of people together.

“We’ll do what we did in the day, we’ll turn up at 1.15pm, have a laugh, play the game, win the game, and go home. We’ve got a lot of players and I don’t know how long some will last so we’ll have that discussion. We’ll have a laugh and have something to eat afterwards.”


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McDermott had two spells in charge of the club, most famously at the turn of the 2010s. Both times he was relieved of his duties without having the chance to say goodbye to the Royals supporters.

He concluded: “I’ve never had a chance to say goodbye. It’s not about me. I came back with Leeds United the following season and had an incredible reception, and I’ll always be grateful for that. I will always have a massive soft spot for Reading, as have Steve and our staff and players.”