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Ex-boss Wilkins still keeps close eye on Albion
Dean Wilkins admits Albion’s result is still the first he looks for after a Reading game.
The former Seagulls boss returns to the Amex today in his role as coach to Nigel Adkins with the Royals.
Wilkins teamed up again with Adkins, for whom he also worked at Southampton.
But he admits he still has a soft spot for the Seagulls, where he starred as a playmaking midfielder before moving into coaching.
Asked if Albion’s score was the first he looked for, he said: “I suppose it is. I would be lying if I said it wasn’t.
“It’s a large part of my life, you never lose that sort of affinity that you have.
“It’s still very close to my heart but once you’re playing against them on a match day, everything obviously goes out the window.
“The club has changed enormously. I spent almost half my life there, 20 years as a player, coach, manager.
“To see the transformation in the place now since Tony Bloom went in and they got planning for the new stadium, it’s taken off.
“The Amex is wonderful. As a home crowd they really get behind their team. It’s great to see.
“They’ve managed to adjust the squad year on year. They are getting to that stage now where they are almost ready to make that next jump.
“Obviously we hope it’s not going to be this year because we want that to be us. But you can see the progress they are making both on and off the pitch.”
The teams drew 0-0 at Reading in the Championship and Albion won 1-0 at the Amex in the FA Cup.
Wilkins said: “We’ll certainly be hoping to have a better performance than the cup game, especially the way we started the game.”
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