News and Views
Reading Offer Zat Knight Short Term Contract
11 March 2015
By Hob Nob Anyone?
Reading appear to have given free agent defender Zat Knight a temporary contract until the end of the season. The 6 foot 6 inch 34-year old had enjoyed a long and successful career in English football before leaving Bolton last summer to join American club Colorado Rapids. It failed to work out for Knight in America as he went on to make just a handful of appearances before his contract was terminated by mutual consent last month. That left him free to try and move back into English football for the last few years of his career - and it seems that Reading are willing to give him a try with Anton Ferdinand missing all season and showing no signs of returning.
Although no transfer fees will apply, the central defender has attracted transfer fees totalling £7.5M during his career. Knight made 181 appearances for Fulham after signing as a youngster in 1999. His performances for Fulham saw him earn a senior England call up where he won two caps. His success in making it into his national team saw him get plenty of attention and resulted in Aston Villa paying out £3.5M for his services in the summer of 2007. Two years later Bolton Wanderers paid £4M to sign the player, and he went on to have a long career with Bolton that spanned five years before what seemed to be a retirement to the MLS in the USA. At Bolton he clocked up a further 191 appearances giving career statistics of over 430 games and ten goals.
With Reading suffering from a fixture pile up, but with Championship status nearly secured for another season, Knight appears to be signed as cover as Clarke continues to rotate his squad. The recent injury to Alex Pearce coupled with Ferdinand failing to ever get match fit indicates Clarke felt it wise to have additional cover as Reading play 4 fixtures in just 9 days from last Saturday to next Monday. Pearce should be back in action this weekend for the Watford visit but may find himself saved for the FA Cup quarter final replay against Bradford City at the Madejski Stadium on Monday.
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