Match Report: 2010/2011 Season

15 February 2011: CHAMPIONSHIP
Reading: Long (81 mins).
Sheff utd: Bogdanovic (88 mins, pen).
Half Time: 0-0.

Attendance: 19,271

Pos Team P Pts GD
11 Watford 30 44 +10
12 READING 31 43 +11
13 Ipswich 30 41 +4
Reading: A. Federici, M. Mills, I. Harte, A. Griffin, I. Ingimarsson, J. McAnuff, J. Tabb (M. Manset, 78), B. Howard, J. Kebe, B. Gunnarsson (M. Antonio, 70), S. Long. Subs not used: N. Hunt, H. Robson-Kanu, Z. Khizanishvili, C. Armstrong, A. McCarthy.
Sheff Utd: S. Simonsen, S. Jordan (M. Lowton, 46), N. Collins, J. Ertl, E. Parrino, M. Yeates (D. Bogdanovic, 66), M. Doyle, S. Quinn, L. Williamson, R. Cresswell, S. Vokes (B. Riise, 66). Subs not used: N. Nosworthy, J. Slew, M. Bent, G. Long.
Reading: Gunnarsson, Antonio, Long.
Sheff Utd: Jordan, Quinn.
Ref: Trevor Kettle

Sodden and muddy pitch, near-constant rain, very little quality on show. We had the better of it for almost all of the game, but it often felt like we were battling the conditions as much as a very poor United side, which the STHs are calling their worst for more than a decade. As expected McDermott filled the midfield with reserves rather than chance two up front. All three played ok - Gunarsson particularly played well - but Long was isolated and never had enough of the ball to threaten the opposition until his well taken goal late on. Most of our chances up til then had come from set-pieces, but the delivery or finish had always been lacking. The game was also dogged by poor referring, highlights including a general insistence on disallowing Reading the advantage, booking Gunnar for a really very standard slide-tackle, and the penalty which (having not seen any replays) looked a very poor call. It was at the opposite end, but it looked like just a shoulder charge from Griffin.

So, Federici didn't have to make any save of real note, we hit the post (I think) early on and Simonsen made three decent stops, most notably from a great Long chance at the very end. All in all we struggled with the pitch and conditions, failed to play much good football, but still did enough to beat poor opposition. For the 4th time in 4 games we've dropped points in the final minutes. With a bit more attacking nous we might not have been at the mercy of a rubbish ref, but there you go. Still feeling somewhat robbed.

Yes we were terrible in the final third. We dominated possession and I lost count of the number of corners and free kicks in good positions in the first half but they never came to anything. Utd were a poor side lacking in confidence and we should have beaten them comfortably. Jobi had a mare of a first half, corners and shots flying wide or at the keeper. However, he made amends when he put Long through for the goal. Griffin should know better barging a player in the penalty box - it was gift to the home side.

Gunarsson started slowly but really put himself about winning many battles. Tabb was a real terrier in the first half but faded in the second. Howard sadly was ineffectual - too easily muscled off the ball giving away possession - hopefully he wil now be dropped when Legs returns. In defence, Mills was irratic although he did a lot of covering for Griffin who in the end cost us two points. Harte did ok but his set pieces were never on target - he had plenty of chances and took none of them. Can't see us rising above mid table on this form - no real quality on show and no prospect of bringing any in.

Got an opinion? E-Mail us at
Appropriate submissions will appear on match report pages

Reading started brightly and, after Ingimarsson's touch on Brian Howard's inswinging free-kick had tested Simonsen, the Blades goalkeeper had to be alert again to keep out McAnuff's back-post header. McAnuff was a constant threat down the flanks and skipped clean through, only to be denied by Simonsen once more after the interval. The home fans had little to cheer with Michael Doyle's wayward looping header a rare moment of excitement in the Reading box. Their mood worsened when Long latched onto McAnuff's through-ball and slipped the ball under Simonsen with nine minutes of normal time remaining. But the a late spell of pressure paid dividends for the hosts as Bogdanovic drew the foul from Griffin before picking himself up and converting the resulting spot-kick.
BBC Sport