News and Views

Fans Hope For Different Approach Against Norwich

29 September 2017
By Hob Nob Anyone?

In form Norwich City come to Reading this weekend on the back of two straight away wins in a run of five league games undefeated. Ominously for Reading, the Canaries have kept five straight clean sheets in the League - which could be a problem for a Reading side that has struggled to find the net this season. Reading are nine Championship games into the season and are yet to score a league goal in the opening 45 minutes of a match. With that in mind, and Jaap Stam asking negative fans not to attend, there's not a big incentive to rush to this fixture. On top of that kick-off is at 5:30pm at the Madejski Stadium to allow Sky TV to screen the game live. It feels a strange choice of fixture given Reading's recent lack of entertainment.

Unless something is dramatically different with this match, it seems a reasonable bet it could develop into a big switch off for the neutral fan. However, something has to change, and hopefully this is the match where Reading can start positive and actually take a lead in at the half time break. It has to happen at some point this season. Things will have to change if Reading fans are going to be satisfied at half time. The Royals have gone five games without a win in all competitions and have scored just three goals in those five games. The Royals have scored just one goal in their last three home games, and that was an 87th minute equaliser from the boot of Bodvarsson, who Stam seems so keen to leave on the bench. Reading are clear leaders of the Championship possession table, but are 21st for goals scored and have only scored 4 goals in the league from open play all season. Possession alone does not win points.

After a poor run of form, Stam finds himself under some unexpected early season pressure. It may be early days still, but another Reading defeat would leave Reading fans looking at the relegation positions and Stam forced to justify himself to both fans and owners. There is expectation that the Reading manager will shuffle his squad around again for this match to try and earn some points. Will that mean that Reading will play a striker? With Kermorgant and Mendes still both out through injury, will Bodvarsson get a start? Stam may well have Mo Barrow back in his squad after the player completes his return from a knee injury, but Jordan Obita remains out after being stretched off the pitch at the end of the home draw against Hull City.

The last time Reading faced Norwich was in April when we were on the wrong end of a 1-7 scoreline at Carrow Road after being 1-6 down after just 41 minutes. Earlier last season we had much more success with a 3-1 home win. Kermorgant, McCleary and Harriott scored the goals for Reading on Boxing Day - but only after a very poor first half of entertainment. Kermorgant's goal came just before the break and Reading then went on to secure an impressive victory. So, perhaps the same again isn't that unlikely after all, and would provide much relief all round at Reading FC.

Recent Games Against Norwich City

08 April 2017 Championship Norwich (Away) L: 1-7 Read report...
26 December 2016 Championship Norwich (HOME) W: 3-1 Read report...
28 December 2014 Championship Norwich (HOME) W: 2-1 Read report...
29 November 2014 Championship Norwich (Away) W: 2-1 Read report...
20 April 2013 Premier League Norwich (Away) L: 1-2 Read report...
10 November 2012 Premier League Norwich (HOME) D: 0-0 Read report...
12 February 2011 Championship Norwich (Away) L: 1-2 Read report...


Discussion On This Story:


» 28 Sep 2017 08:11


When : Saturday 30th September, 5.30pm
Where : Madejski Stadium, Reading, RG2 0FL
Capacity : 24,161

Next Norwich City. And on the telly. No, really it is. Sky have actually decided to cover a Reading game and even more amazingly it isn't QPR or Ipswich either. Will it be a case of yet more ineptitude as Reading totally fail to play any from of football in their opponent's half or will it all come good suddenly and leave everyone glossing over the recent "fantastic" run of results.

In all likelihood comparisons will be made between Oliviera and Aluko - seems Reading were looking to buy Aluko OR Olivieira never both (according to some of the comments I've seen from the club in the media) - so let's all hope it's not too annoying for Reading supporters as Oliviera comes off the bench and scores while Aluko delivers another ball into Row Z

Norwich have recorded five consecutive clean sheets (apparently a club record) and only conceded one goal in the last six games (which was a late injury time consolation at Brentford). This will make the game even more fun when you consider the recent utter bluntness of Reading's thoroughly non threatening attack (it's so safe it has now got the British Safety Standard mark).


Injuries should mean Norwich lose the services of Mario Vrancic (calf), Steven Naismith (groin) and Wes Hoolahan (knee) in addition to the long term absentees of Alex Pritchard, Matt Jarvis, Jamal Lewis and Louis Thompson.

Reading's catalogue of woe continues with no Kermorgant, Watson, Mendes, Obita and most likely being a game too soon for the return of Harriott or Mo Barrow. Expectation also is that there will be yet another bemusing player omission, of which we all know nothing as yet, but will be put down to some injury or other after the game.

Fans should also be prepared to be on the end of a lot of 7-1 references from our East Anglian friends, especially if there is a miracle and Reading take the lead, but more likely along the lines of "we want 8" every time they score.


West Sussex has the honour of providing the services of American comic, and former English cricketer, Tim Robinson for this encounter



29 Apr 17 > Reading 1-0 Wigan Athletic
01 Oct 16 > Reading 1-1 Derby County
02 Feb 16 > Ipswich Town 2-1 Reading
21 Sep 13 > Derby County 1-3 Reading


Norwich are one of those sides that used to be reasonably regular opponents until they found the second division in 1960 and since then, apart from 2009/2010, they've been consistently in the top two divisions so the two sides went about 35 years or so with no league meetings.

Therefore this game will be the 35th time the sides have played a league game in Reading. The home league record so far reads 18 Reading wins to 9 for Norwich with 63 scored and 44 conceded

So, based on that, are Reading twice as good as Norwich then? Think we can all guess the answer to that one.

How to follow the game

  1. Get a ticket and travel to the Mad Stad

  2. Listen to Radio 5 Live and/or a myriad of other radio stations for score flashes

  3. Ring/text a mate for updates

  4. Use an iFollow subscription

  5. BBC Radio Berkshire (FM : 104.4, 104.1 or 95.4 depending where you are in the area)

  6. SKY Football League Channel

Recommendation. Don't bother arriving until the second half.


» 28 Sep 2017 08:22

its difficult to feel too optimistic about this one isn't it?

 Blakey's Chin

» 28 Sep 2017 08:56

Oliveira to score anytime 6/4, lump


» 28 Sep 2017 09:03

This match is now even more vital after Brum's win last night. If we don't win and other results don't go our way we will be sucked into the relegation zone. I suppose the fact we're playing later means the players will know what they need to do.

 Norfolk Royal

» 28 Sep 2017 09:19

Oliveira is a doubt for this one btw having missed the last game through injury. Probably be on bench though as local paper here saying he is on the verge of being match fit. He actually had a shocker in his last game.

Norwich are currently playing like we did in the early part of last season, their new German manager Farke trying to impose a possession based game. Expect the teams to cancel each other out. One goal will surely seal it for either team.


» 28 Sep 2017 09:20

Reckon Sky have picked an absolute stinker here tbh


» 28 Sep 2017 09:23

We now go live to Reading vs Norwich



» 28 Sep 2017 09:26



» 28 Sep 2017 09:27


 under the tin

» 28 Sep 2017 09:58

Can't be Reading, that's the halfway line.....Now if it had been around our penalty box.........


» 28 Sep 2017 14:49


 Gunny Fishcake

» 28 Sep 2017 16:52

That is so funny....wish I knew how to do that, best thing this week re RFC

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