MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

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Sutekh
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MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Sutekh » 02 Feb 2021 14:22




When : Saturday 6th February 2020, 3pm
Where : Bet365 Stadium, Stanley Matthews Way, Stoke On Trent, ST4 4EG
Capacity : 30,089

Reading, needing one more win to more or less guarantee safety for this season, next make a trip to the “five towns” and it won’t be easy. Stoke are awkward, physical and actually not that bad at playing the game so a Reading win will be a very decent achievement indeed.

Briefly nicknamed the Ploppers (Wikipedia circa 31 January), Stoke City is not altogether on a good run with 5 points all there is to show from the last 7 league games played. But the club is organised and difficult to beat as those 5 points have emerged from 5 drawn games and the only defeats being to both Bournemouth and Watford. Add to that the not unusual Reading factor of opponent in bad form equals win for opponent then you’ll realise this game is indeed going to be a hard challenge. But at least the dreadful defensive performance in this season’s reverse fixture should give something for VP to work on with the players.

Stoke’s bad run could well be put down to the struggle the club have had with injuries but, just as you’d expect, well in time for this game that injury run appears to now be disappearing into the past with the likes of Stephen Fletcher etc. back and raring to go. Fletcher is the usual pain for Reading though Nick Powell is actually the leading scorer with 7 strikes. Early in this window two very useful attackers Jack Clarke (Spurs) and Rabbi Matondo (Schalke 04) joined on loan so there is going to be a lot of attacking threat for Morro, T-Mac et al to marshall.

Stoke will be without striker Tyrese Campbell through injury and defender Rhys Norrington-Davies through suspension but will have new loan signing D’Margio Wright-Phillips available. Reading should be pretty much as good as you can get though with Liam Moore being the only proverbial “first name on the team sheet” player still unavailable.

Referee

Mr Tim “7 Reading league defeats from the last 8” Robinson.

Previously

09 Dec 20 > Reading 1-2 Birmingham City
19 Sep 20 > Reading 2-0 Barnsley
18 Jul 20 > Blackburn Rovers 4-3 Reading
07 Dec 19 > Reading 2-3 Birmingham City
06 Apr 19 > Hull City 3-1 Reading
01 Jan 19 > Reading 1-4 Swansea City
19 Sep 18 > Reading 1-2 Norwich City
16 Jan 18 > Reading 3-0 Stevenage (FA Cup 3)
30 Sep 17 > Reading 1-2 Norwich City
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

Historically

The 24 previous visits to Stoke in the league have brought Reading 6 wins and 6 draws so probably not too bad for northern trek in the scheme of things. The biggest win there was 4-0 almost 20 or so years ago while the heaviest defeat was by 5-0

How to follow the game

  1. Listen to Radio 5 Live and/or a myriad of other radio stations for score flashes
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  3. Use an iFollow subscription
  4. BBC Radio Berkshire (FM : 104.4, 104.1 or 95.4 depending where you are in the area)

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Hound » 02 Feb 2021 15:00

Prob same team as against Bournemouth - possibly Meite in for Olise

Holmes ok for RB for another week, no point rushing Yiadom back in

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Stranded » 02 Feb 2021 18:22

Stranded family Derby this one, so we need to beat them to make sure I don't lose the season.

Though if we lose and go up, I couldn't care less.

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Snowflake Royal » 02 Feb 2021 19:10

Hound Prob same team as against Bournemouth - possibly Meite in for Olise

Holmes ok for RB for another week, no point rushing Yiadom back in

Yep, said elsewhere I'd like to see Yiadom get another 15 - 30 mins from the bench before returning to the XI.
Similar with Meite, though Olise and Ejaria both had issues that saw them come off against Bournemouth so that might see one or both rested, in which case Meite has to be a shoe in.

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Mid Sussex Royal » 02 Feb 2021 19:22

I'd defs play Meite for Olise for this one. I saw some of their game at the weekend and they are very direct and physical and Meite's extra physical presence will help. They also extensively time wasted with players regularly feigning injury as soon as they went down to 10 men to hold on to the draw.

Don't rate O'Neill at all - they are not play off contenders in my view; important we score first though on Sat.


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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by skipper » 02 Feb 2021 20:28

+1 for the "start Meite" crowd. Stoke are physical, Olise is not.

And +1 for starting Holmes, but easing Yiadom back in.

Is Puscas still injured? He must be nearing a return? Love to see him come back chomping at the bit to start.

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by royalp-we » 03 Feb 2021 01:16

I’d start Meite even though he got crocked when this ref oversaw his last game of ours...

After the last few performances I’ve full faith in Pauno getting the players rallied up for this. Some early Joao magic will be the perfect revenge for what happened earlier in the season.

Stoke will make it really difficult to break them down but if we want to be in the top 6, gunning top 2, we need to be winning this.

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by NewCorkSeth » 03 Feb 2021 08:06

Do we start Meite for his physicality or bring him on in the second half after they are a bit tired?

Heaven knows they have to foul Ejaria, Olise and Swift to stop them when they really get going around the box. Could be smart to bet on wearing them down before bringing on Meote who is, by far, our most direct player.

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Snowflake Royal » 03 Feb 2021 08:24

He's also the one I'd say would have the biggest impact off the bench if needed. Adds a totally different dimension to our play.

Think he's worth protecting a little.


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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by URZZZZ » 03 Feb 2021 11:07

royalp-we I’d start Meite even though he got crocked when this ref oversaw his last game of ours...

After the last few performances I’ve full faith in Pauno getting the players rallied up for this. Some early Joao magic will be the perfect revenge for what happened earlier in the season.

Stoke will make it really difficult to break them down but if we want to be in the top 6, gunning top 2, we need to be winning this.


Agree, key to this one is not conceding the first goal as Stoke will likely pack their box and frustrate. Started really well against them in November, but gave away a cheap goal and from then on, didn't do enough to get back into the game, whereas I think if we scored the first goal that game, we'd have won, and I think the same may apply on Saturday

They're not the most creative side in the league, lot of hit and hope, although they do seem to score quite a lot of crosses. Important that our CB's deal with any aerial bombardment and our wide players can stop the crosses. Would be a huge blow if we gave away a cheap, early goal

Record isn't particularly great against Stoke though, last two results up there have been 0-0 in fairly dire games

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Hound » 03 Feb 2021 11:22

I don't really agree with bringing Meite in to try to match Stoke physically tbh. We should be beating them at our game, not trying to match up to theirs

But Pauno seems to like giving Olise one match on, then one match off. Got it in my head Meite is a bit of a slow starter after injury as well.

I think I'd rather see Olise again actually. Meite can come on if we need to change it up, and also give us cover for Joao up front

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Snowflake Royal » 03 Feb 2021 14:15

Hound I don't really agree with bringing Meite in to try to match Stoke physically tbh. We should be beating them at our game, not trying to match up to theirs

But Pauno seems to like giving Olise one match on, then one match off. Got it in my head Meite is a bit of a slow starter after injury as well.

I think I'd rather see Olise again actually. Meite can come on if we need to change it up, and also give us cover for Joao up front

That's right, he often came back and got lambasted for 3 - 5 games before going on a scoring run

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Hound » 03 Feb 2021 20:46

Not strictly related to this game, but noticed Ejaria was the second highest who scored rater in the division for January (first was Joao). Surprising considering even some of his biggest fans would probably describe his form as mixed at best

He is fifth overall for the season on there behind Kieffer Moore, Toney, Joao and Buendia

Do wonder if we actually under-rate him a bit sometimes


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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by NewCorkSeth » 04 Feb 2021 08:18

Hound Not strictly related to this game, but noticed Ejaria was the second highest who scored rater in the division for January (first was Joao). Surprising considering even some of his biggest fans would probably describe his form as mixed at best

He is fifth overall for the season on there behind Kieffer Moore, Toney, Joao and Buendia

Do wonder if we actually under-rate him a bit sometimes

People do under-rate him but whoscored gives completed dribbles a very high score which is why Ejaria is so high. Same for Richards actually, who is in team of the season so far.

He also has a high pass success rate. I think we probably just expect more from him because he makes it all look so easy and when he does make a mistake it stands out.

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Hendo » 04 Feb 2021 08:36

NewCorkSeth
Hound Not strictly related to this game, but noticed Ejaria was the second highest who scored rater in the division for January (first was Joao). Surprising considering even some of his biggest fans would probably describe his form as mixed at best

He is fifth overall for the season on there behind Kieffer Moore, Toney, Joao and Buendia

Do wonder if we actually under-rate him a bit sometimes

People do under-rate him but whoscored gives completed dribbles a very high score which is why Ejaria is so high. Same for Richards actually, who is in team of the season so far.

He also has a high pass success rate. I think we probably just expect more from him because he makes it all look so easy and when he does make a mistake it stands out.


I love Ovie, think he is one of the most exciting players we have and I hope we see him really develop here and become a top player. The criticism for me comes with overplaying sometimes, I just don't think he needs to do it. He is good enough to just go past the guy or find a pass, without having to try and beat him 6 times with skill, you're not Glenn Little, Ovie :D

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by NewCorkSeth » 04 Feb 2021 08:44

Hendo
NewCorkSeth
Hound Not strictly related to this game, but noticed Ejaria was the second highest who scored rater in the division for January (first was Joao). Surprising considering even some of his biggest fans would probably describe his form as mixed at best

He is fifth overall for the season on there behind Kieffer Moore, Toney, Joao and Buendia

Do wonder if we actually under-rate him a bit sometimes

People do under-rate him but whoscored gives completed dribbles a very high score which is why Ejaria is so high. Same for Richards actually, who is in team of the season so far.

He also has a high pass success rate. I think we probably just expect more from him because he makes it all look so easy and when he does make a mistake it stands out.


I love Ovie, think he is one of the most exciting players we have and I hope we see him really develop here and become a top player. The criticism for me comes with overplaying sometimes, I just don't think he needs to do it. He is good enough to just go past the guy or find a pass, without having to try and beat him 6 times with skill, you're not Glenn Little, Ovie :D

He does overplay it yeah but whoscored sees 5 completed dribbles against 1 failed dribble :lol:

Hence why his rating is and has been so high all season.

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Once upon a time . » 04 Feb 2021 09:49

Our defensive weakness all season has been right back , that’s why Morrison has to do so many rescue jobs . The best RB we have is Yiadom , so it’s a complete no brainier , when he’s fit he should play !

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Hiram K Hackenbacker » 04 Feb 2021 11:09

NewCorkSeth
Hendo
NewCorkSeth People do under-rate him but whoscored gives completed dribbles a very high score which is why Ejaria is so high. Same for Richards actually, who is in team of the season so far.

He also has a high pass success rate. I think we probably just expect more from him because he makes it all look so easy and when he does make a mistake it stands out.


I love Ovie, think he is one of the most exciting players we have and I hope we see him really develop here and become a top player. The criticism for me comes with overplaying sometimes, I just don't think he needs to do it. He is good enough to just go past the guy or find a pass, without having to try and beat him 6 times with skill, you're not Glenn Little, Ovie :D

He does overplay it yeah but whoscored sees 5 completed dribbles against 1 failed dribble :lol:

Hence why his rating is and has been so high all season.

I agree

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by NewCorkSeth » 04 Feb 2021 11:21

Hiram K Hackenbacker
NewCorkSeth
Hendo
I love Ovie, think he is one of the most exciting players we have and I hope we see him really develop here and become a top player. The criticism for me comes with overplaying sometimes, I just don't think he needs to do it. He is good enough to just go past the guy or find a pass, without having to try and beat him 6 times with skill, you're not Glenn Little, Ovie :D

He does overplay it yeah but whoscored sees 5 completed dribbles against 1 failed dribble :lol:

Hence why his rating is and has been so high all season.

I agree

This might be my first "I agree". It's about time if so.

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Re: MATCHWATCH : Stoke City (a)

by Coppells Lost Coat » 04 Feb 2021 12:27

Hendo
NewCorkSeth
Hound Not strictly related to this game, but noticed Ejaria was the second highest who scored rater in the division for January (first was Joao). Surprising considering even some of his biggest fans would probably describe his form as mixed at best

He is fifth overall for the season on there behind Kieffer Moore, Toney, Joao and Buendia

Do wonder if we actually under-rate him a bit sometimes

People do under-rate him but whoscored gives completed dribbles a very high score which is why Ejaria is so high. Same for Richards actually, who is in team of the season so far.

He also has a high pass success rate. I think we probably just expect more from him because he makes it all look so easy and when he does make a mistake it stands out.


I love Ovie, think he is one of the most exciting players we have and I hope we see him really develop here and become a top player. The criticism for me comes with overplaying sometimes, I just don't think he needs to do it. He is good enough to just go past the guy or find a pass, without having to try and beat him 6 times with skill, you're not Glenn Little, Ovie :D


This is my main concern with Ovie, yeah we get it you are hugely talented. Now pass the ball. That is maybe why i am a critic is because of his huge ability and expectations.

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