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Reading FC Striker Deniss Rakels Heads To Lech Poznan On Loan

The Latvian goes to Poland in search of the first-team football he didn't get in Berkshire this season.

Reading v AFC Bournemouth - Pre-Season Friendly Photo by Ben Hoskins/Getty Images

Striker Deniss Rakels has joined Lech Poznan on loan. Subject to a medical, the 24-year-old Latvian will stay in Poland for one season, with Kolejorz having the option of making the move permanent after that.

UPDATE: The club finally confirmed the news today, 10 days after this piece originally came out.

According to Tom Crocker from Wokingham Sport, Rakels doesn't fit into Jaap Stam's plans going forward:

Rakels also told Latvian outlet Apollo a few weeks ago that, despite getting back to fitness, he'd known his game time would be limited. In May, he put the likelihood of going out on loan to build up fitness and sharpness at around 95%.

Indeed, Rakels only played three competitive games under Jaap Stam before injury - twice in the Championship and once in the League Cup. That said, he did net the equaliser in a pre-season friendly at Swindon last summer.

Having been brought in by Brian McDermott a year and a half ago, the Latvian forward played 12 times in 2015/16, scoring on three occasions - including this:

Even so, it's unsurprising to see Rakels depart a club where he never really found his feet. In joining Lech Poznan, he's going back to a league where he played for five seasons - for Zaglebie Lubin, GKS Katowice and Cracovia Krakow (his last club before signing for The Royals.

It's unlikely we'll see Rakels in a Reading shirt again but, nonetheless, we wish him very well for the future.

Deniss Rakels' career stats and info come from Transfermarkt.