Reading Football Club News: December 2016

Fulham Match Abandoned As Fog Clears

31 December 2016
By John Wells

A moment of crass stupidity and gross incompetence by referee James Linington ruined an evening's entertainment for thousands of football fans at the Madejski Stadium this evening. Before setting off on my sixty mile journey to this evening's game I took the precaution of checking the weather forecast. The BBC website predicted thick fog around 8.00 p.m. clearing quickly around 9.00 p.m. It would appear referee Linington failed to consider the weather forecast as an indicator of how the weather might change during the course of the game. Regardless of this oversight he allowed the game to begin as the fog rolled in. Conditions worsened as the game progressed, but not sufficiently to warrant abandonment. As half time approached, as predicted, the fog began to lift, and when the second half was due to begin there was little evidence of any fog anywhere - apart from in the space between Mr Linington's ears!

Without bothering to step out onto pitch he decided to abandon the game on the basis of his assistants' opinion that the other side of the pitch was not visible thereby making it difficult to make accurate decisions. (They seemed to be having just as much difficulty spotting incidents, such as a blatant tug on Kermorgant's arm in the penalty area as he moved towards the ball, occurring right under their nose. As far as I was aware the referee should allow the game to continue as long as he is able to see both goals from the centre of the pitch. Had he bothered to check before he made his absurd decision, he would have found visibility more than adequate to see across the pitch as thousands of spectators would verify. The stadium announcer declared the fog to be "worse outside the ground" which made all the more galling as we all queued in perfect visibility to leave the car park which for some reason took much linger that usual. The decision to abandon the game after everyone had purchased their half time refreshment and had settled down in their seats for the second half. As Mr Linington is employed by the Football League they should compensate the spectators (liable due to referee's error!)

In spite of the conditions the first half was keenly contested. Fulham may have had slightly more possession but Reading created the two best chances. McCleary beat the offside trap with a superbly timed run but a poor touch hampered his chances of making the most of the opportunity. He still managed to get his shot away but by then Bettinelli had set himself and turned the ball wide for a corner. McCleary should have scored but he usually finishes more convincingly when he does not have some much time to make his decision about how to beat the 'keeper. There second effort came in stoppage time and was a brilliant solo effort from Harriot who wriggled past lunging defenders to unleash a thunderbolt which Bettinelli saved at full stretch. Sadly he put so much into his shot he appeared to have torn his hamstring and limped off for what looks like being a lengthy lay off.

Both teams played well in spite of being closed down very quickly all over the pitch with Fulham edging control of midfield. Kelly in no way shirked a challenge but was simply overpowered by the Fulham's physical presence. In view of the recent drubbing at Craven Cottage Jaap Stam's team had a much more secure look about them - apart the left side where the visitors seemed to get behind the defence with alarming regularity. (This also happened in the game on Boxing Day.) Also worth noting the absence of Moore in the heavy away defeat was significant. He was excellent again this evening. His full blooded challenge on Aluko was worthy of a Tackle of the Season Award.

It is hard to say which way the result might have gone but it was cracking first half with two very good sides going at each other with some intensity. It promised to be an even better second half but thanks to Mr Linington it did not happen. Fulham looked as good as any team I have seen in this league this season and I am looking forward to the re-arranged fixture whenever that may be. So at the mid-point in the season the Royals find themselves in third place in the table. It looks like being a happy new year for their fans.

Fulham Look To End Reading Home Run

29 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Reading will be looking to extend their home winning run to six games on Friday night at the Madejski Stadium. The Royals face play-off rivals Fulham, for an 8pm kick-off, after making it five consecutive home wins with a 3-1 Boxing Day victory over Norwich City. That victory saw Reading close the gap on second place to six points at the midway point of the season. The Canaries were a team expecting big things this season, but arrived at Reading out of form and on a dramatic slide down the Championship table. Fulham will be an entirely different test after hitting form as they continue their climb up the table. Fulham are four points away from the play-off positions after an impressive 2-0 away win at Ipswich on Boxing Day.

The Cottagers are unbeaten in five games - a run that began with their 5-0 thrashing of the Royals at their place at the start of December. Reading were very much second best that Saturday afternoon and were already looking a beaten side before Danny Williams was sent off just nine minutes into the second half. The Royals have won 3 out of 4 since the collapse at Craven Cottage, and will be looking for revenge, and more importantly more points to keep pace with the top two. Danny Williams will be hoping for a longer stay on the pitch. Meanwhile John Swift will be pushing for more match time after making his return from injury on Monday afternoon. Swift came on to play the last 13 minutes and looked fully recovered and will be hopeful for a place in the starting eleven. Kermorgant scored before embarrassing himself from the penalty spot but will be looking to keep hold of his place as manager Jaap Stam looks to have options in all departments again.

Fulham are favouries for an away win with Ladbrokes - probably after their recent 5-0 demolition job on the Royals:

  • Reading win: 15/8
  • The draw: 12/5
  • Fulham win: 11/8

That big defeat for Reading against Fulham made it three defeats out of four in our recent meetings. Our last win was a 3-0 victory at the Madejski Stadium in September 2014 with two goals from Glenn Murray and one from Nick Blackman. Since then we've conceeded 13 goals in 4 games to Fulham - with three defeats and a home draw that came last season. Reading will be looking to make the most of home advantage and improve their recent form against the visitors.

Recent Meetings With FULHAM

DATE COMPETITION OPPOSITION SCORE REPORT
03 December 2016 Championship Fulham (Away) L: 0-5 Read report...
05 March 2016 Championship Fulham (HOME) D: 2-2 Read report...
24 October 2015 Championship Fulham (Away) L: 2-4 Read report...
17 January 2015 Championship Fulham (Away) L: 1-2 Read report...
13 September 2014 Championship Fulham (HOME) W: 3-0 Read report...
04 May 2013 Premier League Fulham (Away) W: 4-2 Read report...
27 October 2012 Premier League Fulham (HOME) D: 3-3 Read report...
12 April 2008 Premiership Fulham (HOME) L: 0-2 Read report...
03 November 2007 Premiership Fulham (Away) L: 1-3 Read report...
14 April 2007 Premiership Fulham (HOME) W: 1-0 Read report...
25 November 2006 Premiership Fulham (Away) W: 1-0 Read report...
05 April 1999 Division Two Fulham (HOME) L: 0-1 Read report...
23 February 1999 Division Two Fulham (Away) L: 1-3 Read report...

Reading Make It Five Consecutive Home Wins

26 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

After a dull first forty-five minutes which saw Reading take a the lead as half time approached, the game came to life to produce a highly entertaining second half as the Royals went on to secure an impressive fifth successive home victory. City pressed and contained Reading in a first half of few chances only to fall behind to a rare moment of high quality football. Kermorgant guided Kelly's free-kick into the net with a subtle glancing header. Early in the second half City briefly reproduced the kind of play which enabled them to recently hold their own in the Premier League, and deservedly equalised through Oliveira. The lead was short-lived, and as the game opened up, Reading regained their lead. City were reduced to ten men and Harriot finished them off with a brilliant third goal.
Read More...

Norwich Visit Reading In Desperate Need For Points

23 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Reading enter Christmas in third place in the Championship - having massively exceeded expectations in the season so far. The visitors on Boxing Day are a side that, after a very bright start, have been hugely disappointing. With Norwich in tenth place and Reading in third, a reverse in positions would have been much more likely and was nearly the case just a couple of months ago. The Canaries were top of the table after 12 games, with the Royals back in 8th spot. Norwich visit the Madejski Stadium with manager Alex Neil under intense pressure. With fans still hopeful for a return to the Premier League, a defeat for his side at Reading could well mean he is shown the door.

Football fans are more than fickle. Right now Jaap Stam is gathering immense support and praise from Reading fans, and the media, as he has introduced a new type of football to the club, and the results have swung in our favour. However, earlier in the season, after a handful of poor results, Stam was fighting off the criticism and vowing to stick to his tactics of passing possession football. It has paid off for Stam, and you have to admire his perseverance that has led to success on the pitch. Sure, we lost at Leeds and got labelled as "boring, boring Reading" in the process but the results in general are starting to speak for themselves.

The Royals will have Danny Williams returning from suspension and is likely to feature for the first time since the 0-5 thrashing at Fulham. Since then Reading have collected six points from a possible nine to retain that third place. At the Madejski Stadium we have now had four straight wins and only let in two goals. Meanwhile, Norwich have lost four consecutive away games in the League as they slip down the table. Nearly everyone would point to a Reading win, but some bookmakers seem to believe City are capable of turning their season around. On 10Bet football betting the Canaries are favourites for the win at 31/20. Reading are due to drop points at home but it's hard to see why Norwich are favourites with Reading looking to hold that third spot.

The last time the two sides were in the Championship together was in the 2014/2015 season when Reading secured six points out of six with two 2-1 victories both home and away. None of those goalscorers are likely to be in action unless Jake Cooper, who scored two amazing headers at Carrow Road, gets some action. Hal Robson-Kanu and Simon Cox scored the goals at home but have since moved on. It's fair to say Reading have moved on as a club since that season - so here's hoping for another three points against promotion rivals on Boxing Day.

Recent Meetings With NORWICH

DATE COMPETITION OPPOSITION SCORE 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...
13 November 2010 Championship Norwich (HOME) D: 3-3 Read report...
27 April 2009 Championship Norwich (Away) W: 2-0 Read report...
13 December 2008 Championship Norwich (HOME) W: 2-0 Read report...
31 January 2006 Championship Norwich (HOME) W: 4-0 Read report...
24 September 2005 Championship Norwich (Away) W: 1-0 Read report...
12 April 2004 Division 1 Norwich (HOME) L: 0-1 Read report...
30 September 2003 Division 1 Norwich (Away) L: 1-2 Read report...
05 March 2003 Division 1 Norwich (Away) W: 1-0 Read report...
18 September 2002 Division 1 Norwich (HOME) L: 0-2 Read report...
03 May 1998 Division 1 Norwich (HOME) L: 0-1 Read report...
21 October 1997 Division 1 Norwich (Away) D: 0-0
Report not available
04 March 1997 Division 1 Norwich (HOME) W: 2-1 Read report...
16 November 1996 Division 1 Norwich (Away) D: 1-1 Read report...
16 March 1996 Division 1 Norwich (HOME) L: 0-3 Read report...
30 December 1995 Division 1 Norwich (Away) D: 3-3
Report not available

Reading Third At Christmas

18 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Reading delivered a third consecutive 3-2 League defeat to bottom three side Blackburn Rovers, thanks to a stoppage time winner from George Evans. The Royals were twice leading, only to see Blackburn score two equalisers before Evans' late goal sealed the victory, and confirmed that Reading will be third in the table at Christmas. After two straight defeats to nil on the road before this fixture, three goals away from home ensured it will be a very happy Christmas for Jaap Stam and his men.

Blackburn will feel very hard done by in a game in which they matched the Royals until the dying moments. Reading will feel they deserved the victory after making the most of their opportunities and finishing strongly to claim the points. Stam stuck with his team that had lost 0-2 at Leeds on the previous Tuesday, leaving Kermorgant on the bench in favour of Dominic Samuel. That move paid off just after the half hour mark. Garath McCleary had already nearly put Reading ahead with a shot that was pushed away by the Blackburn Rovers goalkeeper, but set up Samuel later who scored his second Reading goal of the season.

The home side equalised just before half time after a good spell of pressure, and could have gone ahead after half time but Ali Al Habsi found himself in the right place at the right time. With an hour played Liam Kelly nearly scored with a long range effort that hit the crossbar and may have already crossed the line before Moore made sure to put Reading back ahead. Again, Reading's lead was short lived as another header found its way past Al-Habsi. However, the game was set for a dramatic finish as Reading increased the pressure and McCleary was again provider with a cross that saw Evans sidefoot home to make it 3-2 to the Royals. There was still time for some nervous moments but Reading hung on for the win.

Championship Table at: 19 December 2016
  PlHWHDHLHFHAAWADALAFAAGDPOINTS
1Newcastle 227032311912226+2849
2Brighton 22821226641138+2148
3READING227311785151321+140
4Huddersfield 227121495251217039
5Leeds 227231595051113+438
6Sheff Wed 2280316113441012+337
7Derby 225331155331210+836
8Birmingham 226331815343914-234

Reading Hope To Avoid Another Away Defeat

16 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Reading hit the road again this weekend for the trip to Blackburn Rovers - and will be hoping to avoid a third consecutive away defeat to nil. Reading's last two away games have seen a 0-5 stuffing at Fulham and a 0-2 reverse at Leeds United. Those defeats have been surrounded by home wins to keep Reading in the top three in the Championship. Blackburn should give a different type of challenge to the Royals as they remain in the bottom three - despite last months 1-0 away win over league leaders Newcastle. Since then Rovers have picked up just a point but suffered narrow 2-3 defeats at the hands of Preston and second placed Brighton. The season may have been tough on Blackburn so far but they are certainly showing signs of recovery as they look to climb out of the bottom three before the end of the year.

The home side have a defensive crisis going on with four central defenders ruled out. Charlie Mulgrew, Tommie Hoban and Elliott Ward are likely to miss out through injury and Gordon Greer is suspended for the visit of Reading. Reading will be without Danny Williams as he completes his suspension and John Swift is not yet ready to return to action. That means Jaap Stam is likely to keep a similar line up to the midweek defeat at Leeds.

The Royals dominated possession against Leeds on Tuesday but failed to create much up front, leading the home fans to label Stam's side as "boring". That label is unlikely to stop Stam adopting a similar approach this Saturday after he claimed Reading had played well at Elland Road and deserved something from the game. Reading will be hoping for possession football with an end product to improve their record away from the Madejski Stadium.

Reading have won just once against Blackburn in their last ten attempts. That win came last season, almost exactly a year ago, when Danny Williams scored the only goal of the game at the Madejski Stadium. With recent history, and Reading's recent away results, Blackburn are favourites for the win:

  • Blackburn Win: 8/5
  • Draw: 12/5
  • Reading Win: 19/10

Recent Meetings With BLACKBURN

DATE COMPETITION OPPOSITION SCORE REPORT
07 May 2016 Championship Blackburn (Away) L: 1-3 Read report...
20 December 2015 Championship Blackburn (HOME) W: 1-0 Read report...
11 April 2015 Championship Blackburn (HOME) D: 0-0 Read report...
01 November 2014 Championship Blackburn (Away) L: 1-3 Read report...
22 February 2014 Championship Blackburn (HOME) L: 0-1 Read report...
23 November 2013 Championship Blackburn (Away) D: 0-0 Read report...
29 March 2008 Premiership Blackburn (HOME) D: 0-0 Read report...
20 October 2007 Premiership Blackburn (Away) L: 2-4 Read report...
13 May 2007 Premiership Blackburn (Away) D: 3-3 Read report...
16 December 2006 Premiership Blackburn (HOME) L: 1-2 Read report...
 
Reading and Blackburn - Head to head record (since August 1994)
Games Between Reading and Blackburn 10
Reading Wins 1
Blackburn Wins 5
Draws 4
Reading Goals 9
Blackburn Goals 16
Average Goals Per Game 2.5

Club Keep Manchester United Ticket Prices Low

15 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Tickets for Reading's away game at Manchester United in the third round of the FA Cup go on sale from Monday. The Royals have an allocation of nearly 5,500, which means, with the distance involved, and the game being shown on live TV, any fan wanting to go will almost definitely be able to get a ticket. However, Reading Football Club have taken the unusual move of subsidising ticket prices to reduce the on-sale price to season ticket holders and members.

Manchester United had priced tickets between 37 and 45 pounds - a huge price given the early stage of the cup and the significance of the match. The Royals will, quite rightly, get a lot of praise and positive media coverage by putting tickets on sale for a much reduced, and much more reasonable, 30 pounds.

To add further embarrassment to Manchester United's over-inflated ticket prices, the Royals have already pledged to honour their on-going "twenty's plenty" campaign. That means if the tie did go to a replay, visiting United fans would only fork out a maximum of 20 pounds for their tickets.

Concession prices for Old Trafford will now be 18.50 for season ticket holders (10 pounds for under 16s) and 21.50 for members (13 pounds for unders 16s). After initial sale to season ticket holders only, tickets go on sale to members with 1000 plus points from Wednesday 21st December, it is 500 plus points the next day and 100 plus points by Friday. Any remaining tickets are then expected to go on sale to those with a member card followed by general sale.

Reading Take On Sixth Placed Leeds United

13 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

It was third versus sixth on Saturday as the Royals overcame Sheffield Wednesday at the Madejski Stadium. Tonight sees a repeat, but with Reading on the road, as the Royals take on sixth placed Leeds United at Elland Road. Reading's 2-1 victory at the weekend consolidated third place and kept the Royals in touch with the top two. It was Reading's sixth victory from seven league matches. Tonight's fixture is guaranteed to be a tough one for Reading with Leeds in decent form. However, the Royals will take heart from Leeds 0-2 away defeat at Brighton and their 0-2 home defeat to Newcastle United last month.

Of course, our last away fixture saw that huge 0-5 defeat at Fulham. With that in mind Jaap Stam may take an even more cautious approach to this fixture, although publicly he is looking for another big league win: "To play in a stadium like Elland Road, it's not the easiest of games and they've got a very good side, physically and in their style of play. It's going to be a difficult game and we know that. But, if you want to stay high up the table, you need to win against these sorts of teams."

Leeds have midfielder Kalvin Phillips missing through suspension, while Danny Williams is also still serving his suspension for his recent red card. Leeds are also missing Eunan O'Kane in midfield who is out through injury. Meanwhile, Yann Kermorgant had his return from injury at the weekend and will be looking to be back in Reading's starting eleven up front.

Reading have failed to win in their last four encounters with Leeds United. Both of the last two seasons have seen us take a point off Leeds - a 0-0 home draw last season and a 0-0 away draw in October 2014. Earlier this year we were beaten 2-3 at Leeds with Hector and Rakels on the scoresheet. Reading won't be able to rely on Rakels hitting the net this time around as he is still ruled out with his season long injury.

Recent Meetings With LEEDS

DATE COMPETITION OPPOSITION SCORE REPORT
16 April 2016 Championship Leeds (Away) L: 2-3 Read report...
16 August 2015 Championship Leeds (HOME) D: 0-0 Read report...
10 February 2015 Championship Leeds (HOME) L: 0-2 Read report...
01 October 2014 Championship Leeds (Away) D: 0-0 Read report...
11 March 2014 Championship Leeds (Away) W: 4-2 Read report...
18 September 2013 Championship Leeds (HOME) W: 1-0 Read report...
06 April 2012 Championship Leeds (HOME) W: 2-0 Read report...
17 December 2011 Championship Leeds (Away) W: 1-0 Read report...
22 April 2011 Championship Leeds (Away) D: 0-0 Read report...
27 November 2010 Championship Leeds (HOME) D: 0-0 Read report...
15 April 2006 Championship Leeds (Away) D: 1-1 Read report...
29 October 2005 Championship Leeds (HOME) D: 1-1 Read report...
12 February 2005 Championship Leeds (Away) L: 1-3 Read report...
19 October 2004 Championship Leeds (HOME) D: 1-1 Read report...
18 November 1997 League Cup Leeds (Away) W: 3-2 Read report...
10 January 1996 League Cup Leeds (Away) L: 1-2
Report not available

Royals Back To Winning Ways

10 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Two second half goals from Roy Beerens earned three points to keep Reading in touch with Newcastle and Brighton at the top of the league. After a dreary first half and a sloppy opening ten minutes of the second, Reading took the lead with a deflected Roy Beerens strike from the edge of the box. Beerens added a second with as composed a finish as you are likely to see in the Championship this season with just under a quarter of an hour left to play.

The Royals appeared to be cruising to a comfortable fourth successive home win until substitute Fletcher nodded home at the far post two minutes into the generous six minutes of stoppage time allocated by referee Harrington. In a frantic finish Reading could have conceded an equaliser or added a third, but held out for deserved win. Read More...

Reading Hope To Bounce Back As Wednesday Visit

09 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Reading will be looking to bounce back from last weekend's 0-5 Championship defeat away at the hands of Fulham this weekend, as Sheffield Wednesday visit the Madejski Stadium. The game should be another big test of Reading's promotion credentials with Wednesday just 3 points and 3 places behind the Royals. Reading's run of five straight wins in the league saw us rise to a very much unexpected third place - before we returned to reality with the big defeat at Fulham. Despite that defeat Reading, remain in the top three and just six points away from the top of the table.

Reading's position in the table has come as a surprise to everyone - but having made such progress with the season rapidly approaching the half way point, games such as this weekend have taken on extra importance compared to points needed to maintain a mid-table position. Sheffield Wednesday are on good form and visit Reading on the back of a 2-1 home win against Preston North End and a 2-0 win on the road at Wolves the week before. With the same goal difference as Reading a win would see them move ahead of us in the table.

Danny Williams will definately be missing after getting sent off at Fulham last weekend, as he now faces a three game suspension. Liam Moore will be back available for selection after completing his recent suspension. Reading will still be without Swift, Kermorgant and Quinn who remain out through injury.

Reading have come out on top in recent meetings with Saturday's visitors. Our last two home games against Sheffield Wednesday saw a 1-1 draw earlier this year and a 2-0 victory the year before back in January 2015. Pogrebnyak and Chalobah were the goal scorers that day as Reading climbed to 16th in the Championship table.

Recent Meetings With Sheffield Wednesday

DATE COMPETITION OPPOSITION SCORE REPORT
23 January 2016 Championship Sheff Wed (HOME) D: 1-1 Read report...
19 August 2015 Championship Sheff Wed (Away) D: 1-1 Read report...
31 January 2015 Championship Sheff Wed (HOME) W: 2-0 Read report...
20 September 2014 Championship Sheff Wed (Away) L: 0-1 Read report...
08 February 2014 Championship Sheff Wed (HOME) L: 0-2 Read report...
02 November 2013 Championship Sheff Wed (Away) L: 2-5 Read report...
27 February 2010 Championship Sheff Wed (HOME) W: 5-0 Read report...
05 December 2009 Championship Sheff Wed (Away) W: 2-0 Read report...
03 March 2009 Championship Sheff Wed (Away) W: 2-1 Read report...
16 September 2008 Championship Sheff Wed (HOME) W: 6-0 Read report...
22 April 2006 Championship Sheff Wed (Away) D: 1-1 Read report...
01 November 2005 Championship Sheff Wed (HOME) W: 2-0 Read report...
11 January 2003 Division 1 Sheff Wed (Away) L: 2-3 Read report...
13 August 2002 Division 1 Sheff Wed (HOME) W: 2-1 Read report...
 
Reading and Sheff Wed - Head to head record (since August 1994)
Games Between Reading and Sheff Wed 14
Reading Wins 7
Sheff Wed Wins 4
Draws 3
Reading Goals 28
Sheff Wed Goals 16
Average Goals Per Game 3.14
 

BT To Show Royals Trip To Manchester United

08 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Reading's FA Cup third round match against Manchester United will be screened live on BT Sport. The game's selection for TV coverage will see the game kick-off at 12:30pm on Saturday 7 January 2017. The game was always likely to be picked for live TV with Reading manager Jaap Stam making a return to his old club, who find themselves out of form and struggling in the Premier League.

The lunch time kick-off will mean an early start for the Reading fans that choose to make the trip up to Manchester. Ticket prices, allocation and sale dates are yet to be confirmed by the clubs.

Manchester United Away In Third Round

05 December 2016
By Hob Nob Anyone?

Reading have been drawn to play Premier League Manchester United in the third round of the FA Cup. The draw will see Royals boss Jaap Stam get a quick reunion as he faces his former club for the first time as a club manager. The Stam connection will be sure to attract plenty of attention as he media look for a interesting tie in the first round the top two divisions take part. After several decent cup runs in recent history, an away trip to Manchester United in the third round means Reading have one of the toughest possible start if they are to make progress this season.

The game is scheduled for the weekend of 7 January 2017, but could be played either side of the weekend if selected for live TV coverage.

Recent Meetings with Manchester United

DATE COMPETITION OPPOSITION SCORE REPORT
16 March 2013 Premier League Man Utd (Away) L: 0-1 Read report...
18 February 2013 FA Cup Man Utd (Away) L: 1-2 Read report...
01 December 2012 Premier League Man Utd (HOME) L: 3-4 Read report...
19 January 2008 Premiership Man Utd (HOME) L: 0-2 Read report...
12 August 2007 Premiership Man Utd (Away) D: 0-0 Read report...
27 February 2007 FA Cup Man Utd (HOME) L: 2-3 Read report...
17 February 2007 FA Cup Man Utd (Away) D: 1-1 Read report...
30 December 2006 Premiership Man Utd (Away) L: 2-3 Read report...
23 September 2006 Premiership Man Utd (HOME) D: 1-1 Read report...
27 January 1996 FA Cup Man Utd (HOME) L: 0-3 Read report...
 

Match Preview: Fulham FC v Reading FC

03 December 2016
By Alex Bower

"Fulham have got a great team. I think it will be one of the most difficult games to play so far this season. The way they want to play is quite similar to what we like to do. They like to play out from the back, they've got quality attacking players who are comfortable on the ball as well. If you give them time they can make it very difficult for you so it is going to be a very interesting game on Saturday."
- Reading FC Manager Jaap Stam

"They are a team that play very good football and look to control the game, and we are going to try and put them in a situation where they don't get an opportunity to dictate the play. They have been playing very well. They've won their last five games but we are confident in ourselves, and nobody has outplayed us in recent games. We are confident we can show a good performance and win."
- Fulham FC Manager Slavisa Jokanovic

Reading will be looking to settle a score when they face Fulham at Craven Cottage on Saturday. Last season's fixture between the two sides will live long in the memory, unfortunately for Reading fans. The Royals were 2-0 up and looking comfortable. Three Fulham goals in six minutes, however, turned the tide and Fulham went on to win 4-2.

While the game against Fulham marked the start of a decline for the Royals last season, this season Reading will be hoping to continue a more positive run. The side have won five games in a row and will now be looking to make it six. Last time out Reading beat Bristol City 2-1 at home courtesy of goals from Garath McCleary and Roy Beerens. The Royals now find themselves third in the Championship.

Fulham are not doing too badly either, having pushed themselves up to tenth in the league. Their last fixture against Brighton, however, did not go to plan as they lost 2-1 away from home. Kevin McDonald initially gave Fulham the lead but two second-half goals from Sam Baldock and Glenn Murray were enough to give Brighton the victory.

If Reading are to extend their winning streak, then they will have to do so without centre-back Liam Moore. The defender has been an important member of their squad but is suspended for Saturday's game. John Swift and Stephen Quinn also remain sidelined with injuries.

The only absentee for Fulham is Denis Odoi after he picked up his fifth yellow card of the season. Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic will, however, be able to rely on the services of Captain Scott Parker once more as he returns from his suspension. Lucas Piazon could also make an appearance, following his season on loan at the Madejski last year.

While both sets of fans will be optimistic about Saturday's fixture, it is a difficult one to predict. Fulham have won their last two home games against Reading but have never won three in a row. This season Fulham have also only won one of their last eight games at Craven Cottage, despite Tom Cairney creating more chances this season than any other Championship player. Reading meanwhile are on a winning streak and will be looking for it to continue.

With both teams playing in a similar fashion it is difficult to predict how the sides will fare. It has the potential to be a tough game for the Royals but they will be confident about extending their run and maintaining their place near the pinnacle of the table.