Nick Blackman: Reading striker joins Derby County

Nick Blackman in action for Reading
Nick Blackman, who began his professional career at Macclesfield Town in 2007, made 118 appearances for Reading

Derby County have signed striker Nick Blackman from Championship rivals Reading for £2.5m on a three-and-a-half-year deal.

The 26-year-old, whose Royals contract was due to expire in the summer, has scored 13 goals in 28 games this term.

He leaves Reading after three years, having joined the then Premier League side from Sheffield United in 2013.

"We are delighted to bring one of the Championship's leading goalscorers to the club," said Rams boss Paul Clement.

"There has been a lot of interest in him so we're naturally happy that he has chosen to join us," he added.

"We've got a number of talented players in the attacking areas of our squad and Nick only enhances that."

The move sees Blackman reunited with Clement, the pair having previously worked together at Blackburn where Clement was an assistant coach.

Blackman is Derby's second January addition, following the arrival of Guinea international Abdoul Camara from French Ligue 1 side Angers on Monday.

Reading chief executive Nigel Howe said the the move was "the right thing for all parties concerned" having failed to reach a new contract with the player after five months of negotiations.

"This deal will also allow us the chance to potentially re-invest in the first team this month, helping the manager to bolster his squad should the right opportunities arise during the transfer window," Howe said.

Meanwhile, Derby forward Simon Dawkins has left the club to re-join American Major League Soccer side San Jose for an undisclosed fee.

The 28-year-old scored nine goals in 74 games since initially moving the East Midlands club on loan in October 2013, but he has made just two appearances for Derby under Clement.

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