Reading’s on-loan winger Josh Sims has returned to parent club Southampton after struggling for regular minutes at the Madejski Stadium.

After initially signing for the duration of the campaign from the Premier League side in August under former Royals boss Paul Clement, he has been recalled by the Saints and their new manager, Ralph Hassenhuttl.

The 21-year-old struggled for regular game time in Berkshire, and whilst he did make 18 appearances in all competitions for the club, Sims made just five starts in the Sky Bet Championship.

Sims did provide two assists during his time at Reading, but he was unable to score for the club during his time there.

He currently has 20 senior appearances for Southampton under his belt, including 13 in the Premier League.

After impressing in the club’s academy, Sims was rewarded with a first-team debut from the start during a Premier League match against Everton in November 2016, providing the assist for Charlie Austin’s early goal to secure a 1-0 victory at St Mary’s Stadium.

His first-team experience with the club, that he has been a part of since 2011, also includes a start against Hapoel Beer Sheeva in December 2016 in the Europa League, a match which ended in a 1-1 draw.

Sims has some international experience under his belt too and has 18 caps for England’s youth sides, representing them at under-17, under-18 and under-20 levels.

His most recent international appearance saw England’s under-20s beat Portugal 3-0 in March 2018. In that game, Sims featured as a second-half substitute alongside West Bromwich Albion midfielder Harvey Barnes and Crystal Palace’s promising right-back, Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

He was not the only one of the Saints’ players away from the club on loan to return today, with the side also confirming the return of defender Alfie Jones from Scottish side St Mirren.

Southampton are next in action on Saturday, where they face a trip to Leicester City at the King Power Stadium, a match that Sims will hope to be involved in as he looks to impress new manager Hassenhuttl.


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