News and Views

Reading Travel To Cardiff

23 January 2015
By Hob Nob Anyone?

The Royals travel to fellow Championship team Cardiff City this weekend in the fourth round of the FA Cup. Reading fans will be hoping for a victory, and the chance of a run in the competition, after the league season looks set to offer very little success. In round three Reading were away winners at Huddersfield when Nick Blackman scored the only goal of the game. Meanwhile Cardiff were 3-1 home winners against Colchester in their third round fixture.

Nathaniel Chalobah will be available for selection, after joining from Chelsea on loan this week, and there is a strong chance he will make his Reading debut. Steve Clarke is expected to shuffle his side around for this cup game and will probably start Mikkel Andersen in goal after he kept a clean sheet in the previous round. As usual Anton Ferdinand remains on the sidelines with his latest injury, and he is joined by Mackie who is also unlikely to feature. Reading's other new signing, Jure Travner, is less likely to play but could be given a chance from the bench as Clarke uses the cup game as an excuse to experiment with the squad. Key players may well be rested ahead of the league game at Millwall scheduled for Tuesday evening.

Reading lost 1-2 at Cardiff in the league back in November. Our last FA Cup fixture against Cardiff was a 0-2 defeat in the third round in January 2009. Cardiff are currently four places above the Royals in 12th place.

Reading and Cardiff - Head to head record (since August 1994)
Games Between Reading and Cardiff 24
Reading Wins 6
Cardiff Wins 9
Draws 9
Reading Goals 34
Cardiff Goals 33
Average Goals Per Game 2.79

Royston Drenthe Completes Move

23 January 2015
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Royston Drenthe has finally left the club after many months of speculation about his future. Drenthe has joined Kayseri Erciyesspor who play in the top tier of Turkish football. Drenthe was cast aside last summer after incidents off the pitch caused the club to ban him from training with the first team. It was made clear that Drenthe would never feature for the first team again as he was forced to train with the under 21 squad before eventually being shipped out to Sheffield Wednesday on loan.

When his loan spell at Wednesday finished the club made it public that they were trying to find a buyer to take him on a permanent basis. Reading have eventually achieved that to successfully reduce the wage bill and also give the player another chance to rebuild his career.

Drenthe failed to overly impress in Sheffield after making 7 starts and a further 8 appearances off the bench. He managed a single goal but also picked up a red card during his short stay at the club. He signed for Reading in the summer of 2013 and had a series of up and down performances for the Royals before losing his place in the starting eleven.

At times he seriously impressed, including his Reading debut, and looked a top quality player but was disappointing in other games before incidents caused a split between the player and management. In the 2013/2014 season he made 17 starts in the league and seven further substitute appearances in league and cup. He scored two goals for Reading during his time at the club.

Royston Drenthe - His Record at Reading
Starts 17
Substitute Appearances 7
Goals 2
Yellow Cards 4
Red Cards 0
Debut 3 August 2013: Reading 2 Ipswich Town 1
Last Game 14 April 2014: Reading 1 Leicester City 1

Chalobah Joins On Loan From Chelsea

22 January 2015
By Hob Nob Anyone?

It's been a busy day in the transfer market for Reading Football Club today. Earlier this morning it was confirmed that Slovenian defender Jure Travner had completed his moving to Reading on a short term contract until the end of the season. That was followed up by news that Craig Tanner will be joining League Two side AFC Wimbledon on loan until the end of the season. There was more good news for Tanner as he also signed a new contract with Reading FC to keep him at the club for another two and half years.

That flurry of activity was then followed up by the confirmation that the Royals have captured Chelsea midfielder Nathaniel Chalobah on loan until the end of the current season.

Chalobah is just twenty years old but has already built up a decent career record. He has regularly represented his country and is an England under-21 international. Although he hasn't appeared for Chelsea he has enjoyed successful loan spells at Watford, Nottingham Forest and Middlesbrough. He was also with Premier League side Burnley in a loan spell that ran until the end of December. At Burnley he made four appearances off the bench. It was his loan spell at Watford that began in August 2012 when he made a name for himself as a teenager. He made 38 starts for Watford and hit five goals. He went on to make 13 appearances for Forest and 19 for Middlesbrough.

Reading manager Steve Clarke spoke of his delight at securing Chalobah's services on loan: "Nathaniel is a good young player who I have known about and followed for some time. He burst onto the scene as a 17-year-old when he was part of the Watford team that narrowly missed out on promotion to the Premier League in 2012-13. Since that season, he has gained experience at other clubs and now feels that Reading is the right club to further his development as a player and we are delighted that he has chosen us ahead of anyone else. He will certainly enhance our already strong midfield department with his qualities. We welcome Nathaniel to the club and look forward to him playing his part in a more successful second half to the season."

Chalobah is described as a versatile player who has also played in defence. He should be available for selection this weekend as the Royals travel to Cardiff City in the fourth round of the FA Cup.

Tanner Joins AFC Wimbledon

22 January 2015
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Reading youngster Craig Tanner has joined AFC Wimbledon on loan until the end of the season. The twenty year old striker made his Reading debut earlier this season, when he came off the bench with a couple of minutes left on the clock during the League Cup game against Newport County at the Madejski. Tanner had an immediate impact that night as he scored Reading's third goal just a minute later as the Royals won 3-1.

Tanner then went on to make his first, and only, start for Reading in the next round of the competition as Reading won 1-0 at Scunthorpe. He has also made three Championship appearances off the bench to bring his career total up to five appearances in a Reading shirt. All those appearances came back in August of last year, and he is likely to welcome the chance to get some further first team football at the mid-table League Two side. Tanner looks like an excellent prospect for the future and could make an impact in League Two.

AFC Wimbledon manager Neal Ardley had plenty of positive things to say when confirming Tanner's arrival on loan: "This is when your recruitment list comes into its own. Last season we covered 250 games and during this campaign so far we've covered around half that number. After speaking to our scouts that cover games for us and looking at the reports again, there was one player who kept coming up and that was Craig. According to those reports he is one of the best young talents around. We look at different types of players and a young lad is always going to be a bit of a gamble at League 2 level. However, with the qualities and talent that Craig has, we believe he could be an exciting player who can cope with the demands at this level."