Coming as a pretty big surprise, Reading midfielder Oliver Norwood has today completed a move to Brighton. As of yet, the transfer fee is undisclosed, but we do know that Norwood has signed a three year contract with the Seagulls.
Cashing in on Norwood isn't that surprising a choice, considering that the Northern Irishman was going into the last year of his contract in Berkshire. What is a surprise, for me at least, is the club he's moving to. Considering that he had been linked fairly firmly with Premier League sides a little while ago, it's a tad underwhelming that Norwood has been snapped up by Brighton (no disrespect to Brighton, I just expected more for Norwood).
Then again, it's a sign of the times - Reading aren't in a position to be able to fend off moves for their best players, even if those moves come from teams in the Championship.
On the brighter side of things...
A well-stocked area
Despite Norwood's departure, Reading do have a number of centre midfielders at the club. In that position, Jaap Stam can count on the likes of Stephen Quinn, Joey Van den Berg, George Evans and Danny Williams. Plus, youngsters Josh Barrett and Liam Kelly are possibly on the verge of breaking into first team football.
With that in mind, I think this loss is more disappointing than damaging. Norwood is certainly a quality player (hence the interest in him, and today's transfer), but hadn't always shown that for Reading over the last few seasons.
What do you make of this transfer? Are you sad to see Norwood go? Leave us a comment below, or tweet us @TheTilehurstEnd