Date: 2nd August 2011 at 11:54am
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A VitalWatford look at what the Royals have been brewing over the course of pre-season…

A VitalWatford look at what the Royals have been brewing over the course of pre-season…

Gaffer: Former Arsenal midfielder Brian McDermott who has come from no-where in the management game to the verge of the Premier League last season, losing the Play-off final to Swansea.

Position 10/11: 5th, after a slow start a surge up the league brought the Royals Play-off action.

In: Mikele Leigertwood (QPR, undisc.) and Bongani Khumalo (Spurs, season-loan).

Out: Matt Mills (Leicester, £5m), Ben Hamer (Charlton, undisc.), Scott Davies, Julian Kelly, Ivar Ingirmarsson and David Mooney (all released).

Star Man: Shane Long – if he hangs around. The Irish international had his best season yet last year in a Reading shirt, breaking the 20-goal mark.

An impressive season as the main man has led to interest from Everton and West Ham in particular, (it’s rumoured), with McDermott setting the asking price at £10m for the 24 year-old international.

Best Business: Retaining the services of Mikele Leigertwood, who added much-needed bite to the Royals midfield last season on-loan.

Signed from QPR for an undisclosed fee, the Antigua international also provides cover for a number of areas.

Prediction: Play-off hunt again.Should be a realistic aim for a side that’s lost just one key player and replaced him effectively.