News and Views

Steve Clarke Sacked

04 December 2015
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Steve Clarke has been sacked as manager of Reading. His dismissal follows last night's 0-1 home defeat against QPR which concluded a win of eight games with just one victory. It's difficult to feel any sympathy with Clarke after his failed attempts to join Fulham last month, which fell apart after his agent got greedy over future bonus payments. Clarke had already been looking for the door himself, and now the club have taken control and pointed him in the right direction - out of the club.

It is a rapid decline for Clarke. Only a month and a half ago Reading were sitting in second place in the Championship after a promising start to the season. Just eight games later and Clarke has gone from hero to villain. It was hard to see a way back for Clarke after he appeared to have taken the Fulham job a couple of weeks ago. A run of strong wins would have been the only way Reading's owners and the fans would have forgiven him. However, just a single unconvincing win over Bolton and two defeats and given the board just the excuse they need to send him packing.

With Reading just a single point out of the play-off positions and over half the season remaining, Clarke's sacking feels like it has come at the right time. With Clarke in control the club would have probably continued to drift down the league. With a new manager in place they have a real chance to make use of a strong squad and try and pull Reading back into the promotion hunt. It's a real opportunity for Reading's next manager.

The Reading board have also dismissed first team coach Kevin Keen as they look to swiftly move on from Clarke's era, leaving under 21 manager Martin Kuhl in temporary charge while they secure the services of a new manager.

Back on the 19th November, with Clarke set to confirm his move to Fulham, Nigel Pearson was named as the favourite to be named as the next Reading manager, and that remains the case. It's likely that Pearson may have already been in talks with the club and he has immediately been installed as favourite to land the job.

Clarke spent less than a year in charge at Reading and departs having lost more games than he won in a short career that will only be remembered for last seasons' run to the FA Cup semi-final. The FA Cup run was a rare moment of glory for Reading, in what otherwise has been a very disappointing twelve months.

Steve Clarke's Reading Record:

  • Games won: 19
  • Draws: 14
  • Defeats: 20

The club's short official statement:
"The board of Reading Football Club have this morning relieved Manager Steve Clarke of his duties.
The club met with Steve in person earlier today and we would like to place on permanent record our thanks to him for his hard work and diligence since his appointment in December 2014."

More on Clarke's departure:

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