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Pearce signs new Reading deal

21 June 2013 17:37

Alex Pearce has signed a new two-year contract at Reading, despite reported interest from Liverpool.

The central defender had been out of contract at the Madejski Stadium but chose to extend his time there rather than seek a move back to the Premier League, with Liverpool said to be monitoring his situation.

Pearce made 21 appearances last season as Nigel Adkins' side returne to the Championship after one season in the top flight.

His performances atrracted the interest of Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni, who handed the 24-year-old his first international cap against Oman in September. Brendan Rodgers worked with Pearce during his time as Reading boss and there were rumours that the current Liverpool manager was looking to bring his former player to Anfield.

However a new deal with Reading, where Pearce came up through the youth system, was put on the table and the challenge of guiding the club back into the Premier League was one that excited him.

"Everyone knows Reading is close to my heart - I have come through the ranks since I was 12 years old," he told the club's official website.

"To be playing for this club is a great feeling and it feels great putting pen to paper. It has taken a little while but I always said that I wanted to stay at Reading and I’m so thankful that I can be a Reading player. I’ve said that I wanted to feel valued, and that’s the case now.

“It’s great to be part of something that we can build on this year. I can’t wait to get my teeth stuck into this promotion campaign, we’ve done it once before and we’ll be looking to do it once again.”

Reading's director of Football Nick Hammond was thrilled to have retained the services of Pearce, and admitted he was looking forward to him adding to his 200 career appearances.

"I am absolutely delighted that Alex has signed this contract," he said. "It has obviously taken a period of time but he has been 100 percent professional and totally focused on Reading throughout that period.

"He is a leader and a winner, and that is going to be crucial for us as we go into the new campaign. He has been there and done it before. He has a vast amount of experience for a player who is only 24 years old, and his best years are still ahead of him.

"This is a massively important signing for the club."

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 16 +23 39
2 17 +22 39
3 17 +12 32
4 17 +10 31
5 17 +15 29
6 17 -1 27
7 16 +9 26
8 17 +3 25
9 16 -4 23
10 17 +0 21
11 16 -3 21
12 17 -10 20
13 16 -3 19
14 17 -6 17
15 17 -12 17
16 16 -10 16
17 17 -8 15
18 17 -14 15
19 17 -9 13
20 17 -14 10

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