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Will Reading FC Swoop For Manchester United’s James Wilson?

Probably not, no. Update: he was a target before.

International Champions Cup 2015 - Club America v Manchester United Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

If you were happy to see the end of all the non-starter rumours linking Reading with moves for every striker under the sun, we have bad news for you.

The Sun link the Royals with a January loan move for Manchester United’s James Wilson, a 21 year-old striker. The Englishman, who like Tyler Blackett is a graduate of the Red Devils’ academy, is reportedly open to an exit from Old Trafford in the next transfer window.

Speaking to MUTV (quoted in The Sun), Wilson claimed that he’s “not ruling it out”.

“The staff all came to an agreement that I would stay until January to build on what I’ve already worked for.

“So I think it’s [leaving in January] certainly a possibility. We’ll just have to talk and have a few conversations with the manager and certain people around here.

“I’m not ruling it out but we’ll come to an agreement over what needs to be done.”

Is this rumour reliable?

No, it’s the Sun.

Ah, but maybe this rumour is right?

No, it’s the Sun.

Yeh but ma...

No, it’s the Sun.

The report, naturally, doesn’t give any concrete evidence that Reading are interested in Wilson. It seems to be wholly reliant on a) Reading needing a striker b) Wilson having a record of going on loan to Championship sides chasing promotion.

Indeed, the Biddulph-born* youngster has played for the likes of Derby County and Brighton and Hove Albion in recent seasons, scoring five goals in 31 appearances (combined across the two loan spells). In fact, 20% of his second tier goals have come against Reading.

*Biddulph is, according to a quick Google search, the ‘Garden Town of Staffordshire’, also dubbed ‘the garden of gardens’ by The National Trust. For those interested in a visit, it is 8.5 miles north of Stoke-on-Trent.

Yes, this tangent has more substance to it than The Sun’s rumour linking James Wilson to Reading.

Anyway, I digress, back to the rumour.

Is this going to happen? No. Reading need a striker, but I doubt that striker is a 21 year-old from Man United who’s still to prove himself in the top two tiers of senior football.

Also, the Sun seem to think that Reading want Wilson on loan, which for me doesn’t quite fit. Yes, we did bring in Lewis Grabban on loan last January, but he was an established, proven goalscorer in the second tier (insert obvious ‘was he really?’ joke here).

In contrast, I doubt Reading would be interested in Wilson unless it was a fairly cheap permanent transfer, giving the club the chance to develop the forward over a long period.

So, in summary, was this article a complete waste of time? In a footballing sense, absolutely, but I’d like to think we’ve all learned something, even if it’s about garden towns in Staffordshire.

Update: Egg on my face, sort of