After the team fell into the Championship’s relegation spots on Easter Monday, Reading has fired manager Paul Ince.
Noel Hunt, the club’s U21 manager and a former striker has been named temporary manager until the conclusion of the current campaign, while assistant manager Alex Rae has also left his position.
Reading lost 2-1 on Monday against Preston, dropping them one point short of safety with five games remaining and ending their eight-game winning streak.
Reading went from 18th to 20th place in the standings last week as a result of receiving an immediate six-point punishment for going above agreed-upon budgetary constraints following an earlier violation of the profitability and sustainability guidelines of the EFL.
Hunt will be assisted by first-team coach James Oliver-Pearce and director of player development Eddie Niedzwiecki during his debut game in charge on Saturday at home against already-promoted Burnley.
“I would like to thank Paul and Alex for their efforts throughout what has admittedly been a disappointing and incredibly hard season so far,” said Mark Bowen, head of football operations at Reading.
“We want to wish them luck in their further ambitions. The board will make every effort to find the manager who will be the greatest match for this football club moving ahead — a candidate who will be able to steer it toward a more promising future. However, for the following five games, we will just be concerned with trying to finish the season. Simply put, that means that everyone, including myself, the staff, and the fans, will give Noel, Eddie, James, and the first-team players their full support as we enter five games that will make or break our 2022–23 season.”
Ince helped the team avoid the brink of relegation by winning four of the final 14 games of the previous season after being first appointed temporarily in February 2022.
After being given the managerial job permanently in the summer, he assembled a fresh new squad while operating under a transfer ban and on a considerably smaller pay budget.