GRIFFIN HEADS READING DEPARTURES

Reading have released defender Andy Griffin as they prepare for life back in the Premier League.

Last Updated: 19/05/12 at 18:59 Post Comment

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Andy Griffin: Moving on

Andy Griffin: Moving on

Reading have released 13 players including veteran defender Andy Griffin as they prepare for life back in the Premier League.

Polish midfielder Tomasz Cywka and former Barnsley man Brian Howard are two of the other bigger names departing the club with Cederic Baseya, Cameron Edwards, Ethan Gage, John Goddard, Simon Locke, Carl McHugh, Jack Mills, David Murphy, Frankie Raymond and Jacob Walcott all told to look for pastures new.

Reading director of football Nick Hammond paid tribute to all the departing players for the roles they have played at the club.

"On behalf of everyone I wanted to thank every single player for their contribution to the club," Hammond told the club's official website.

"There are so many examples, right from Andy Griffin, who was Brian's first signing, up to Tomasz Cywka who made an impact this season both on the pitch and with his personality around the group, but it is not just those two, everyone goes with our very best wishes and gratitude."

Griffin leaves the Madejski Stadium on a free transfer after two-and-a-half years at the club.

The 33-year-old made nine appearances for Reading in the Championship as they won the title, but he has found himself playing second fiddle to Shaun Cummings.

The former Newcastle and Stoke man insists he has enjoyed his time at Reading, ending it on a high as the Royals won the title.

"The two-and-a-half years I've been here I have thoroughly enjoyed," Griffin told the Reading Evening Post.

"I've had my ups and downs this year, but I ended on a high by picking up a medal as part of a squad of champions.

"My time here has been one of the best spells of my career and I've had quite a good career and been fortunate to have played in some good teams," said the former Stoke, Derby, Portsmouth and Newcastle United defender.

Griffin also paid special tribute to Royals boss Brian McDermott for leading the club to promotion.

"I've played for a good manager at a good club with some good footballers and also good men," added Griffin.

"The gaffer has nothing but respect from his players for being a good manager and a good man. I can't speak highly enough of him and everyone else associated with Reading Football Club.

"To bounce back after losing the play-off final last season says a lot about the manager and the squad here. It's a very demanding league and a new challenge now starts for the club to stay in the Premier League. Now is the time for enjoying that success and all the guys at Reading deserve this."

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