FANS' favourite  Noel Hunt admitted he would grasp the opportunity to manage Reading FC one day.

The 35-year-old ex-Royals striker recently took over as player-assistant manager at Irish side Waterford FC.

And he revealed his ambitions to go into management when he finally hangs up his boots.

The Irishman took  his first stride into coaching after Waterford boss Alan Reynolds suffered a broken leg in a horrific and unprovoked assault.

Hunt has been placed in charge of steering the ship while Reynolds recovers and hopes to keep Waterford’s European hopes alive.

“It’s one of those things where I’ve been put on my toes quite quickly,” stated Hunt.

“I had a discussion with my wife and it’s where I want to go. I want to go into management.

“I’m 35 and this gives me a chance to do a bit of playing and have the assistant manager's role.

“It’s a great opportunity for me. Obviously our manager had a bit of an accident a few weeks ago so he’ll be out of action for a while.

“I’m just trying to keep the boys going. We’re in a European spot at the moment so for me it’s very important that we stay there and keep pushing on.”

Hunt has held discussions with Royals about various coaching roles in the past.

And when asked if he would consider managing Reading in the future, he replied: “Absolutely. You never say never. I love the club, they were superb to me.

“I’ve had discussions with them in the past about different roles.

“It’s great to see people like Gibbo (Nigel Gibbs) back there now. It’s a club that’s going to spark over the next couple of years and bounce back.

“It’s had so much disappointment over the last three or four years.

“But Reading is a great club and it entices people in. It’s a family club.”

Hunt was a key part of Brian McDermott’s Royals during the 2011/12 Championship-winning season.

His brother Stephen, also a former promotion-winning Royal, is now an agent who orchestrated John O'Shea's move from Sunderland to Madejski Stadium on Wednesday.