Reading captain Jobi McAnuff to make up for lost time

Reading captain Jobi McAnuff says he wants to make up for lost time as he prepares to make his Premier League debut against Stoke on Saturday.

McAnuff, 30, has been a professional for over 10 years playing 425 league games, but he has never appeared in English football's top flight.

On Saturday he will lead Reading out against Stoke at the Madejski Stadium.

"It's taken me longer than others but I'm glad I'm here now," McAnuff told BBC Radio Berkshire.

The Reading winger started his career at Wimbledon, before moves to West Ham, Cardiff, Crystal Palace and Watford.

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Growing up you want to play in the Premier League and when you turn pro it's all geared towards that. I just want to enjoy it

Jobi McAnuff

He joined the Royals in August 2009 and was a key member of the side that won the Championship title last season but now cannot wait for Saturday to come around.

"I'm like a young kid at the moment. Growing up you want to play in the Premier League and when you turn pro it's all geared towards that. I just want to enjoy it," he said.

The Royals have been active in the transfer market this summer but did their business early and McAnuff says that has helped them bond ahead of the new season.

"Having everyone in for pre-season helped us bond, they are great lads and I'm looking forward to playing with them this season," he said.

Fellow midfielder Jem Karacan spent his summer recovering from ankle surgery after having it broken at the end of last season.

But now he says he is fit and raring to go and has urged a quick start from the Royals.

And with trips to Anfield and the Emirates coming up, Karacan says there is one away day in particular he is looking forward to the most.

"I can't wait, it's been a long time coming, it's all been geared towards this weekend," Karacan told BBC Radio Berkshire.

"Every game is going to be a great experience. The big one is Old Trafford, you see it on Match of the Day every week. It will be great to go to the Theatre of Dreams - that will be a dream in itself."