By Alex Stevens
Tyler Blackett has joined Reading from Manchester United, it was announced on Monday night.
The Championship club revealed on their official website that Blackett had signed a three-year contract after completing a permanent move from the Premier League giants.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) August 22, 2016
Blackett, 22, has ended a 14-year association with United, who he joined at the age of eight, after being deemed surplus to requirements by new manager Jose Mourinho.
The defender was pictured in the stands at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday as he watched the 2-2 draw between Reading and Brighton.
Tyler Blackett is close to joining Reading on loan & was in the stands today to see them play Brighton. [telegraph] pic.twitter.com/9JfhceIUFC
— Man Utd Stuff (@ManUtdStuff) August 21, 2016
Blackett will link up at Reading with a former United defender in the shape of current boss Jaap Stam at Madejski Stadium.
“As we know, Tyler is a talented defender who has played for United’s first team,” Stam told the official Reading website. “He can play as a left-back or a left-sided centre-back; he has got great potential in the sense that he is quick and athletic, defensively he is strong and he is good at set-pieces. As a defender he can go and play high up the pitch as well, and that is what we need in the squad.”
Blackett was not part of the plans under new manager Jose Mourinho despite being given opportunities by ex-boss Louis van Gaal.
Blackett, who can play at centre-back or left-back, has made 12 United appearances after emerging at the start of the 2014-15 season.
The defender spent last season on loan at Celtic but struggled and only played nine matches for the Scottish giants.
The signing of Eric Bailly has pushed the England Under-21 international even further down the pecking order at Old Trafford and Blackett will now be hoping to rebuild his reputation elsewhere.
Bailly and Danny Blind started at the heart of the United defence in their 2-0 win over Southampton on Friday night, with Chris Smalling on the substitute’s bench.