What a run Reading have been on! Climbing into the top six, being top of the form table and what’s best, doing it against some top quality teams.
Jimmy Kebe was back in the side as he replaced an injured Hal Robson-Kanu, which was the only change to the line up that disposed of Leeds last weekend.
This was one of those games that both sides will have thought they could win. After Brighton’s good start to the season, it seems to me that they have slipped away a little but they were well organised and the game looked to be a good battle.
However, Reading picked up where they left off from last weekend as they pressed high up the pitch and didn’t give Brighton much time on the ball. The first goal came after 17 minutes as Captain Jobi McAnuff scored a side footed volley from Kebe’s cross.
The two teams were fairly evenly matched as neither side really excelled but Reading got the second goal just before the break, after some terrific team passing ended with McAnuff scoring his second of the game to put Reading into a great position. It’s the first time for a while that Reading have been in front at the break and dominant in the first half, as many fans have said, we’ve been struggling to get going in games.
After half-time Brighton started to come into the game more, The Seagulls missed some brilliant chances with Craig Mackail-Smith the most guilty culprit as a miss-kick and a poor header left him with no reason to celebrate.
It wasn’t till very late on when Reading got the third, as it was an own goal from Adam el-Abd that sealed the win for Reading. A great Christmas present for all involved for Reading FC and this win is Manager Brian McDermott’s 50th win in charge of Reading. Just the result Reading needed to get into the play-off spots.
And who’s to say we can’t stay there?
Reading:(4-4-2): Federici; Cummings, Griffin, Gorkss (Harte 90), Pearce; Karacan, Leigertwood, Kebe, McAnuff (c); Church (Antonio 88), Le Fondre (Hunt 75)
Subs: Andersen, Harte, Tabb
Booked: Griffin (foul 75)
Brighton: (4-1-4-1): Ankergren; El-Abd, Taricco, Dunk, Greer (c); Bridcutt; Harley, Sparrow, Buckley (Noone 63), LuaLua (Paynter 63); Mackail-Smith
Subs: Brezovan, Navarro, Hall
Booked: Bridcutt (foul 53)