When : Monday 22nd April, 3pm
Where : Madejski Stadium, Reading, RG2 0FL
Capacity : 24,161
Three games left and anywhere between 0 and 5 points needed to mathematically secure safety, trouble is we just don’t know what is needed and won’t until it’s achieved. Could all be settled though if Rotherham failed to win at home against Birmingham and Reading managed to win this one.
Trouble is though there is a not too unreasonable chance that Rotherham will turn Brum over and Reading will get done by Gayle and Rodriguez Albion and so drag it all onto the next game.
And that’s the problem, Reading are tackling WBA whose goal threat is monumental with Gayle having netted 23 goals from 31 appearances while Rodriguez has managed a mere 21 from his 42 appearances, however keep those two quiet and the Albion will have problems scoring!
WBA have lost 4 of their last 10 league games (they’ve won 5 in that time) including both of their last 2 games on the road so there is a chink in their armour to exploit if Reading can work out where it is and throw the right ammunition at it but this is going to be as tough as it gets and I expect every one of us would take a point now if it was offered.
Gareth Barry is injured and will miss the game for the Baggies who otherwise appear to have a largely clean bill of health so HRK may well get his usual slot on their bench. Expecting that Reading haven’t suffered any further injury setbacks and so I don’t think it would be too much of a surprise to see the same line up that took to the field at Bristol City start the game.
While the expectation for Reading to win is low, making the game pretty much a ‘free hit’ to some extent, the fans need to play on that and therefore really make it a cup tie atmosphere and so do as much as possible to make it a herd experience for the West Midlanders. And let’s face it they do not like cup games in Reading....
Gavin Ward returns already, hot on the heels of his visit last month when he allowed Leeds to pick up the points. Reading have lost the last 3 home games played under his management and haven’t even scored in that run so it’s about time something changed.
12 Mar 2018 > Reading 0-3 Leeds United
01 Sep 2018 > Reading 0-1 Sheffield Wednesday
25 Aug 2015 > Portsmouth 1-2 Reading (League Cup)
20 Dec 2014 > Reading 0-1 Watford
25 Oct 2014 > Reading 3-0 Blackpool
17 Apr 2012 > Reading 1-0 Nottingham Forest
01 Feb 2011 > Cardiff City 2-2 Reading
16 Mar 2010 > Reading 1-0 Queens Park Rangers
11 Aug 2009 > Reading 5-1 Burton Albion (League Cup)
This is the sixteenth league season shared with WBA and so far it’s all square all round with 5 wins each and 5 draws.
WBA, though, have only failed to score on 1 occasion while Reading have failed to score on 2 occasions so it all rather suggests there are goals to be had in this one. Going to take quite a performance to keep Gayle and Rodriguez quiet though....
How to follow the game
- Get a ticket and travel to the Mad Stad
- Listen to Radio 5 Live and/or a myriad of other radio stations for score flashes
- Ring/text a mate for updates
- Use an iFollow subscription
- BBC Radio Berkshire (FM : 104.4, 104.1 or 95.4 depending where you are in the area)