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Reading FC Loan Round-Up: December 10th

After Steve Clarke's departure last week, it might be a good idea for Reading's potential new manager to have a read over our loan round-up this week, and see who we've got out on loan (looking at you, Dennis). We've got a lot of new departures this month, so let's get started.

Tom Dulat/Getty Images

Craig Tanner - Plymouth Argyle (SkyBet League Two) November Appearances: 7 Total Appearances: 24 Goals: 4

Tanner made seven appearances over the course of November, scoring the second goal in their impressive 2-0 win over Morecambe. Craig also started the remainder of Plymouth's games in November, being taken off late on in their games against Carlisle (86'), York (81') and Exeter (81') and playing the full 90 minutes in their last two previous outings, 1-1 draws against Leyton Orient and Dagenham.

George Legg - Chesham United (Southern League Premier Division) November Appearances: 1 Total Appearances: 17

George Legg was still recovering from the leg injury he suffered in the previous month, and he missed out on his side's 2-0 win over Billericay at the beginning of November. Legg had previously hoped to be available for the Bristol Rovers game, and was involved for the first time since suffering the injury, but had to make do with a place on the bench as his side completed a famous 1-0 victory over the League Two side to set up a next round clash against Bradford City. After the victory, Legg got his chance to return to the starting line-up, as Chesham rested their starting XI against Burnham with United's second string winning 3-1 - Legg playing 90 minutes.

After that though, Legg had to settle for a place on the bench for the remainder of the month, including their 4-0 defeat to Bradford City to crash out of the FA Cup after a commendable run.

Jake Taylor - Motherwell (Scottish Premier League) November Appearances: 2 Total Appearances:8

It was just the two appearances for Jake Taylor this month as he continues to try and make his mark in Scotland with Motherwell. He came off the bench in stoppage time in his side's 1-0 defeat to Kilmarnock, and was an unused substitute the following week in a 3-1 defeat to Inverness. He started, somewhat surprisingly, against Ross County, but was hauled off shortly before the hour in a 3-0 drubbing. He was then an unused substitute in a credible 2-2 draw with Hearts.

Rob Dickie - Cheltenham Town (Conference National League) November Appearances: 7 Total Appearances: 22 Goals: 2

Rob played every minute for Cheltenham throughout November, appearing in notable victories over Southport, Aldershot and Grimsby, as well as scoring the second goal in his side's demolition of Guiseley, bouncing back from an unfortunate FA Cup defeat to Hartlepool in the previous game. Cheltenham sit top of the Conference, and Dickie remains a mainstay in the side.

Lewis Collins - Farnborough (Ryman League Premier Division) November Appearances: 8 Total Appearances: 19 Goals; 4

Collins has had an impressive start to life at Farnborough and continued that in November, making 8 appearances for his loan club, scoring in their defeat on penalties against Bideford after putting them 2-1 up in extra time with a fierce strike. Collins also appeared in wins over Wingate & Finchley and Hendon, but was benched for defeats to VCD Athletic and East Thurrock.

But it's his new Farnborough team-mate that's really taken the league by storm, more on that a little later on.

Aaron Kuhl - Dundee United (Scottish Premier League) November Appearances: 2 Total Appearances: 7

Kuhl has struggled thusfar with life up in Scotland, but he got a much needed victory at the beginning of November against Ross County, in a game in which he also played the full 90 minutes.

A week later, he managed 71 minutes during their 3-0 defeat to Hibs, and fellow Reading fan, Jon Keen, was kind enough to give us a more in-depth look at how Kuhl played in that game.

I decided to walk around the corner to watch Hibs take on Dundee United in the Quarter Final of the Scottish League Cup tonight – and take in Aaron Kuhl at the same time.  Pleasingly, Aaron favourited my tweet about this - or I suppose we should say he "hearted" it, following Twitter’s recent change, although any mention of hearts doesn’t tend to go down well around Easter Road.

That tweet response, however, was the most reassuring thing I saw from Aaron, today – what I saw on the pitch sadly wasn’t very encouraging.  Dundee United played exactly how you’d expect a team right at the bottom of the table to play – very, very, poorly.  Lacking in pace, confidence and creativity, they look relegation certainties on tonight’s showing.

And, much as it pains me to say it,  Aaron didn’t play well.  He looked slightly lost in the position he was being asked to play in – which was as holding midfielder right in from of the centre-backs – sometimes just a yard or two in front of them.  Faced with an in-form Hibs attack, which played with pace, ability and confidence, this defence was frequently stretched all over the place, and on a fair few occasions Aaron found himself with a dilemma of whether to stay with his man or fill the space created by the movement of the Hibs attackers.  So defensively he looked poor, and a couple of times early on he was suckered into giving away silly fouls.

He was obviously under instructions to stay back and hold, as he hardly ever got forward, even at corners where he lurked on the edge of the opposition area, but for the first seventy minutes Dundee United were strangely reluctant to commit more than a couple of players forward at a time, and seemed to be playing everything at a much slower pace than Hibs, who moved the ball quickly and tellingly.  Interestingly, Aaron was also delegated to stand on the goal line when defending corners– not on a post, but right in the middle of the goal, as the ‘keeper took up position a couple of yards further forward.  He also endured a major bollocking from a fellow defender after he needlessly gave away a corner late in the first half, trying to beat an attacker rather than hoof the ball out.  He was taken off after 70 minutes, and Dundee rallied slightly by having an extra man in attack, but the end result of 3-0 to Hibs didn’t flatter the home side, even though their second goal was from a dubious penalty and their third a wicked deflection at the death.

All in all, it looked like a torrid time for him – and it can’t be one that was good for his confidence playing in a team so out-of-form, so short of belief and also with a goalkeeper who cannot kick, and who kept putting his defence under pressure by refusing to play the ball long, even when his defenders were all closed down.  The position Aaron had to play did him no favours either, and denied him opportunities to do anything creative.

So although this is clearly a learning experience for Aaron it seems a very harsh one, and I hope the experience doesn’t set back his development because it can’t be any fun for him playing this role in this Dundee United team. He can certainly play much better than this – I’ve seen him do it many times – so I’m putting this down to the team and the position.  But as a Reading supporter desperate for him to do well and to break through at the Madejski, this didn’t make pretty watching!

After that match, Kuhl was dropped to the bench for the following two defeats, against Aberdeen and St Johnstone, before being absent from the match-day squad for the remaining two fixtures, against Hamilton and Kilmarnock.

Simon Cox - Bristol City (SkyBet Championship) November Appearances: 2 Total Appearances: 3 Goals: 0

Simon Cox has also struggled to break the partnership of Kodjia and Agard that Bristol City manager Steve Cotterill seems to prefer, and that's been highlighted by the lack of games Cox has been able to get. He made just two appearances in November, coming off the bench mid-way through the second half in the 4-1 defeat to Fulham and 3-0 loss to Rotherham.

Noor Husin - Hemel Hempstead (Conference National League) November Appearances: 4 Total Appearances: 6 Goals: 3

Noor continues to impress for Hemel Hempstead, as he scored twice in their 6-2 thrashing of Gosport Borough at the beginning of November. He then started matches against Margate, Weymouth and Bishop's Stortford, before being dropped to the bench in his side's defeat to Ebbsfleet.

Sean Long - Luton Town (SkyBet League Two) November Appearances:4 Total Appearances: 7

Long started the month off as the first-choice right back for Luton, playing the full 90 minutes in wins over Dagenham & Redbridge and Crawley, but the return of Alex Lawless saw the Irishman drop to the bench for his side's win over Barnet and defeat to Carlisle. He did make a short appearance off the bench against Stevenage, coming on as an 87th minute substitute in the 0-0 draw. He played the full 90 minutes against Peterborough in Luton's latest game though, picking up a booking in a defeat.

Zak Jules - Hemel Hempstead (Conference National League) November Appearances: 4 Total Appearances: 4

Reading's big young centre-back joined up with team-mate Noor Husin on loan at Hemel Hempstead at the beginning of November, and went straight into the starting line-up for their games against Gosport Borough, Margate, Weymouth and Bishop's Stortford, before being dropped to the bench for their match against Ebbsfleet.

Tariqe Fosu - Fleetwood Town (SkyBet League One) November Appearances: 4 Total Appearances: 4 Goals: 1

Tariqe joined League One side Fleetwood Town in mid-November, and grabbed an assist on his debut despite his side's 2-1 defeat to Peterborough. He then followed that impressive debut up by scoring his side's fourth goal in their 5-1 demolition of Swindon Town. Fosu's run of grabbing a goal or assist continued against Millwall the following week too, as he assisted the opener in their 2-1 victory. Fosu also played 66 minutes during Fleetwood's 1-0 defeat to Blackpool.

Dominic Samuel - Gillingham (SkyBet League One) November Appearances: 4 Total Appearances: 4 Goals: 1

It took Dom just six minutes to open his account for his new loan side, tapping home from close range to help his side to a 3-1 victory over Bury. Samuel also played 90 minutes against his former side, Coventry, as well as against Rochdale and Shrewsbury as he looks to establish himself as Gillingham's main source of goals for the season.

After extending his loan he will remain in Kent until January 2nd; manager Justin Edinburgh told the official Gills website:

"With the busy period we have got it is fantastic to be able to extend his stay,"

"We know we can get more out of him; he knows that too. He's getting better and better with each game and we expect that to continue."

Bogdan Vastsuk - Farnborough (Ryman League Premier Division) November Appearances: 10 Total Appearances: 10 Goals: 6

Since joining Farnborough a little over a month ago, Vastsuk has made ten appearances, and has scored six goals in a massively impressive run in the Farnborough side. It took him just 58 minutes to open his Farnborough account, scoring the equaliser in a 1-1 draw with Bideford. He also got goals in wins at Wingate & Finchley and Hendon, as well as opening the scoring in a draw with Needham Market, and scoring consolation goals against both Kingstonian and VCD Athletic.

Jack Stacey - Barnet (SkyBet League Two) November Appearances: 2 Total Appearances: 2

Stacey joined Barnet in the middle of November, making his debut against Notts County in an entertaining 4-2 defeat in which the young winger picked up a booking mid-way through the second half. He was absent from the match-day squad two weeks later though, in the FA Cup against Newport County. On joining the newly promoted League Two side, Stacey said:

"I'm really excited to be at Barnet.

"The club are enjoying some good form at the moment, and I'm looking forward to coming here and contributing to that.

"I predominately play wide right or wide left - I work hard and I like to get a few goals.

"Hopefully I'll be a creative player who can produce goals for the team.

"This is good development opportunity for me, but I just want to come here and help Barnet move up the table - who knows where we could end up this season."

Andrija Novakovich - Cheltenham Town (Conference National League) November Appearances: 2 Total Appearances: 2

Andrija made his Cheltenham debut off the bench at half-time during his side's 2-0 win over Aldershot, and appeared for the second time just a few days later, again off the bench in a 3-1 win over Chester which saw them seal their place at the summit of the Conference over the Christmas period.

Dominic Hyam - Basingstoke Town (National League South) November Appearances: 1 Total Appearances: 1 Goals: 1

Dom Hyam scored his first Basingstoke goal in dramatic fashion last weekend, scoring the winner against Bishop's Stortford in the final moments to seal all three points for his new side.


It's another Farnborough player who gets it this week, as Bogdan Vastsuk's six goals in his opening ten appearances is enough for team's around the league to sit up and take note of the big striker's impressive purple patch.