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Au Revoir Jimmy - Kebe Joins Palace

In a move that had been on the cards for the past few days, winger Jimmy Kebe ended his near six year stint at the Madejski Stadium by joining Crystal Palace for a fee believed to be around £2 million pounds.

Dean Mouhtaropoulos

We'll cover Jimmy's time at Reading a bit more over the coming days but my initial reaction to the confirmation of his departure is one of sadness but resignation.

For me, he'll be remembered as one of the most exciting players we've had during the Madejski Stadium era and those that witnessed his finest hour against Leicester some two and half years ago now will probably say the same. Other memorable goals at Preston and Middlesbrough also stand out while perhaps its fitting that his final two games in front of the Reading crowd were him scoring 2 in a fine win over Sunderland followed by an anonymous display in a 3-0 humping by Wigan.

That summed up Kebe in general, a player who was capable of winning the game on his own or just looking totally uninterested and a bit of a bystander.

His early time in England was generally more average than good but when Brian McDermott took over Jimmy came into his own, being one of the standout performers as the club pulled away from a relegation battle and into an unlikely play-off charge.

Sadly the winger struggled with injuries from that season onwards and missed 10, then 13 and finally 22 league games in his final three years at the Madejski Stadium. Still, those games he did play still provided moments of magic and excitement. Whether it was crossing for Roberts to open the scoring at Southampton, pulling his socks up against West Ham or starting that dramatic comeback against West Brom.

Kebe made no secret of his desire to return to the Premier League and having not appeared under Nigel Adkins, the last straws seem to have been the Malian twice declaring himself unfit to play having been selected by Adkins, with Tuesday's game at Peterborough the latest occasion.

With Kebe 30 in January and with an increasingly inconsistent injury record it stands to reason that we've had the best of Kebe's career and while if fit he's still a genuine match winner, you can understand why the club will have been happy to get £2 million for him with less than a year to run on his present deal. With Drenthe, McCleary, Robson-Kanu, McAnuff and Obita all at the club it's a position that was always likely to squeeze one player out and it seems Jimmy is that man. I just wish we could have seen Kebe and Drenthe together but sadly that's just not to be.

So au revoir Jimmy and thanks for the memories.