Reading FC Match Report: 2019/2020 Season - Championship


Reading: G Puscas (pen 3)
Charlton: --

A third minute penalty struck confidently past Phillips gave Reading a narrow lead which they held on to for an away win which nudges Charlton closer to Division One. The victory extends The Royals unbeaten run to three games and a third clean sheet in a row. The season may be drawing to an end but Reading seem to have hit upon a way of playing which makes them very difficult to beat. Charlton, hovering above the relegation zone, certainly did not lack the desire or appetite for the win they desperately needed. They pushed hard throughout but Reading kept their defensive shape and although they lack a cutting edge they rarely looked like conceding.

Reading took the lead when Rinomhota's enterprising run into the box drew a clumsy challenge from behind by Oshilaja. Puscas, who has had few chances to score recently, converted the spot kick confidently. Charlton’s need for points and being a goal down meant they were frantically chasing the game from that point. As in recent games Reading’s back four was disciplined and calm under pressure and well protected by Pele and Rinomhota in centre midfield. Rinomhota’s contribution was immense with his constant pressing, willingness to burst forward from midfield, and ability to retain possession. It makes you wonder why he was not an automatic from the start of the season.

As the game wore on the foul count mounted with Charlton leading the way with a total of twenty-two offences (plus a few they got away with). William’s came on for Charlton in the second half and his willingness to hit the deck won himself a remarkable number of free kicks. The only surprise was that Charlton only received four yellows cards. Pratley was in particular was prepared to put himself about and yet avoided a card. Reading didn’t let up at any point and pressed high up the pitch making Charlton’s task much more difficult although their forwards carried very little threat. Having said that Reading are missing the spark around the box provided by Ejaria. Neither Puscas or Baldock, looked like getting into scoring positions never mind hitting the back of the net. Meite as always battled away, but today his touch was not quite good enough.

Richards, Obita, Gunter and Moore came on in the second half to bolster the defence and all gave a good account of themselves as the game drifted towards an inevitable conclusion. It was a case of a well organised defence comfortably subduing a blunt attack. Charlton’s future hangs in the balance as Reading, on this form, appear destined for a top half finish.

John Wells

This Championship game took place 144 days ago in the 2019/2020 season.