Reading FC Legend Lands Surprise Managerial Job

Reading legend Dave Kitson has been named as the new head coach of the Nauru national team, the Nauru Soccer Federation have announced.

The former Premier League attacker’s only other coaching role came at non-league outfit Arsley Town back in 2014 when he was appointed as the player-assistant manager under then-boss Nick Ironton, eventually leaving the club once the manager departed.

However, the ex-Portsmouth and Stoke City player also set up The Dave Kitson Academy, offering one-to-one and group coaching sessions with the ambition to “establish an equivalent category one academy in Reading, with other hubs across Berkshire, that is accessible to every relevant age group.”

The “equivalent” training facility that Kitson is referring to is Reading Football Club’s Bearwood Park which is currently being sold to local rivals Wycombe Wanderers, having been built for £50 million and opened in 2019. The deal is set to ensure that divisive owner Dai Yongge can meet ongoing financial obligations.

During his time at the Select Car Leasing Stadium with Reading, Kitson became the club’s second-highest goalscorer of all time, bagging 62 goals in 159 appearances in all competitions. Only Nicky Forster has scored more for the Berkshire outfit.

Now, Kitson is set to take on a new challenge with the Micronesian nation Nauru. In an official statement announcing the news, the country’s Director of Football Development Gareth Johnson revealed how talks came about.

“I first came into contact with Dave during 2020 through our mutual interest in travel when we began discussing a few projects, one of them being Nauru. As things have quickly progressed I am now happy to be in a position to offer him the management role”.

“As people know we are planning a training camp in Nauru this summer, as well as hopefully playing against American Samoa among others. Dave will hopefully be there to not only share his knowledge as a former professional, but also through his experience at running the Dave Kitson Academy”.

Writer’s View

Kitson was part of part of arguably the greatest Reading team in the club’s history under Steve Coppell. In the 2005/06 season, the Royals earned promotion to the Premier League for the first time ever, breaking the Championship by winning the title with 106 points, a record which still stands to this day.

Reading supporters will have incredibly fond memories of the centre-forward and will certainly wish him well during his time in Nauru, building up the nation’s footballing operation despite the island boasting a population of just less than 13,000 which is 13 times less than that of Berkshire.

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About Adam Scully 764 Articles
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