KARL SHEPPARD HAS joined Coca-Cola Championship side Reading on a free transfer.
The Shamrock Rovers striker played a pivotal role in their successes in the Airtricity Premier Division and Europe since arriving from Galway United in January 2011.
And after travelling to England for a medical earlier this week, the Ireland U21 international has signed a two-and-a-half-year deal according to Reading’s website.
The likes of Blackpool, Cardiff City, Peterborough and Watford had also been tracking the Portmarnock native but the Royals’ strong links in Ireland saw them land the 20-year-old.
Steve Coppell signed Irish international pair Kevin Doyle and Shane Long from Cork City back in 2005 while Stephen Hunt plied his trade with with the Berkshire club before moving on and his brother Noel is still there.
“Karl will add to the squad, he’s not here to replace anybody,” Royals director of football Nick Hammond said in this morning’s The Reading Chronicle.
We’ve been aware of him for a long time and he’s really kicked on this season.
“He had a very good season with Shamrock and gained some European experience with them in the Europa League,” he added.
“He holds the ball up well, he’s an intelligent boy and he has goals in him.”
The player himself tweeted the news this morning before thanking Rovers fans and staff for the incredible year he has had.