According to the Daily Mail, Reading are set to add West Ham United defender Reece Oxford to their defence. The 18 year-old is expected to remain in Berkshire on loan until the end of the season, with the Royals forking out for the entirety of his £10,000 p/w wages.
The player himself posted this today:
David Sullivan confirms that Reece Oxford is off to Reading pic.twitter.com/l5QdH365wt— Hammers Chat (@hammers_chat) January 31, 2017
And West Ham United chairman David Gold added this (right in the middle of me writing this article, annoyingly):
DS: "Don't expect much coming in today. We might have a couple of young players going out on loan. @Reeceoxford_ might be going to Reading."— West Ham United (@WestHamUtd) January 31, 2017
Nottingham Forest were reportedly the front-runners to sign Oxford, but a late show of interest from Jaap Stam seems to have done the trick.
With Oxford predominantly playing as a centre half, that gives Reading much-needed cover at the back for the rest of the season. Tiago Ilori signed from Liverpool this January, but promptly picked up an injury against Fulham. Joey Van den Berg has also ruled out.
That leaves just Liam Moore, Paul McShane and Tyler Blackett as dedicated centre halves. That's obviously enough to play three at the back, but an injury or suspension to just one of those throws a major spanner in the works.
For a longer look at Oxford, take a look at Olly's piece from yesterday.