It’s been a year of (some) highs and (many) lows so what better way to round it off than hand out our traditional end of year awards!
Player of the Year
Previous winners: Alex McCarthy (2013), Jordan Obita (2014), Oliver Norwood (2015), Ali Al Habsi (2016), Liam Moore (2017)
Nominated: Jon Dadi Bodvarsson
Winner: Jon Dadi Bodvarsson. In such a dysmal year on many levels, picking a winner was relatively easy in finding the only player who’s hardly made a fool of themselves at all. As our only representative at the World Cup, and our top scorer, this is well earned.
Most Improved Player
Previous winners: Jordan Obita (2013), Jake Cooper (2014), Nick Blackman (2015), Garath McCleary (2016), Liam Kelly (2017)
Nominated: Anssi Jaakola, Tyler Blackett, Yakou Meite
Winner: Yakou Meite. A sterling run at the end of the year after a loan spell was exactly what the doctor ordered and the young striker has netted a wide variety of goals since nailing down his spot in the team.
The ‘Hal Robson-Kanu’ Award For Underachievement
Previous winners: Hal Robson-Kanu (2013 & 2014), Jordan Obita (2015), Jake Cooper (2016), Sone Aluko (2017)
Nominated: Sone Aluko
Winner: Sone Aluko. Sorry Sone, but it’s still not working out and you’re still our record signing. Win this next year and you can keep the trophy.
Previous winners: Academy Success Story (2014), Bradford FA Cup Win (2015), Piazon clincher versus West Brom in the FA Cup (2016), Fulham 2nd Leg PO Win (2017)
Nominated: Vito Mannone’s last-minute penalty save versus QPR, youth players breaking through, Ron Gourlay departing, staying up at Cardiff
Winner: Mannone’s penalty save. A moment that actually delivered us vital points and actually sent all fans home happy. No, I can’t remember that feeling either.
Previous winners: Birmingham 6-1 Reading (2014), Arsenal’s winner at Wembley (2015), Handling of Brian McDermott’s sacking (2016), Moore’s Wembley penalty (2017)
Nominated: Norwich scoring seconds after our equaliser, getting trounced by Ipswich, Dave Edwards’ continued existence, anything that happened between January 1 and December 31
Winner: Reading 0-4 Ipswich. It would have been funny were it not a match that was seemingly vital to our survivial. Well, some of it was funny...
Previous winners: Burnley pitch invasion (2014), Lady Sasima’s song (2015), HRK goal v Belgium (2016), Piazon returning to troll (2017)
Nominated: Getting trounced by Ipswich, a crazy-quiet end at Cardiff, Sone Aluko gets hit by football in the groin, Paul Clement vs Darren Bent, Paul Clement admitting he got team selection wrong basically every week
Winner: Freddie Sears’ calamity goal from our own corner in the Ipswich defeat. Just... just watch it.
The ‘Pavel Pogrebnyak’ Most Missed Reading Player
Previous winners: Adam Federici (2015), Aaron Tshibola (2016), Danny Williams (2017)
Nominated: Joey van den Berg, Danny Williams, Ali Al-Habsi, Yann Kermorgant, Jordan Obita
Winner: Jordan Obita. The stable, edifying force of Obita down the left flank has been a boon for a number of Reading managers and losing that to a nasty injury has been a genuine sour note for the club as a whole.
Previous winners: Royston Drenthe (2013), Dominic Samuel (2014), Jonathan Bond (2015), Yakou Meite (2016), Omar Richards (2017)
Nominated: Andy Rinomhota, Danny Loader
Winner: Danny Loader. A player with clear ability who is now fully integrated into the first team. It may not happen in 2019 (see Yakou Meite’s win in 2016 effectively taking two years to kick in) but we’re very optimistic it will happen.