McDermott caught out by Reading axe
Brian McDermott says he was shocked to get the sack from Reading and thought he would be at the club "forever".
McDermott was dismissed by owner Anton Zingarevich in March with the club deep in relegation trouble, and former Southampton manager Nigel Adkins has since been appointed as his replacement.
Many of the Reading squad were reported to be shocked by the decision to sack McDermott, and the man himself has said he was as surprised as anyone by the news.
"It was initially very difficult, but everyone has to move on and you get on with it," he told Sky Sports.
"It was a shock, because I've been there 13 years and loved every second.
"I had a phone call on the Saturday to see the owner on the Monday and didn't think too much of it, I thought it was just to discuss the team (to play) against (Manchester) United.
"The owner wanted to see me at three and I didn't think too much of it. It wasn't normal but just I didn't get it, until I went into the room and thought 'This guy is going to sack me'.
"It was difficult for him. He made his choice and his decision. I can't say I agree with it but I'll never have a problem with Reading as a club. He thinks what he's doing is right.
"It's about the next challenge for me now. I was hungry before and I'm hungrier now.
"I thought I'd be there forever - that's how you think - but the club is going in a different direction and I think Nigel Adkins is a superb guy and a superb manager."
McDermott expressed his surprise at hearing the news that Martin O'Neill has also been dismissed from his post as Sunderland manager after a run of poor results.
"It's a surprise about Martin," he said.
"He left a message on my phone when I was sacked. With seven games to go it's difficult to go in there and make a difference.
"When you consider the experience and expertise Martin brings it's a big, big decision. Sunderland must have someone lined up to take over almost immediately. I'd be very surprised if they haven't."