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Match Report: Reading 3-1 Leicester City (Reading Fan's Perspective)

Sunday 11th March 2012
Reading secured a vital home win over an improving Leicester City side to extend their winning streak to eight matches.

Leicester were hoping for a good result to force a late play-off push and with the likes of David Nugent, Jermaine Beckford and Neil Danns at their disposal, you can see why the Foxes think it could be possible.

Reading played the same team that beat Portsmouth in midweek and the usual suspects were lively at the start of the game as the hosts put pressure on young Kasper Schmeichel and his defence. Both Noel Hunt and Mikele Leigertwood went close in the early moments, with one shot saved by the legs of Schmeichel and the other cleared off the line.

Leicester had a chance with Sean St Ledger heading just wide, but that sparked Reading even more into life culminating in the opening goal. A cross to the back post found Jobi McAnuff who teed it down to Leigertwood to smash a right footed drive into the top corner as the ball was on the bobble. It was a fantastic goal and a great way to get your second goal of the season.

Leicester, now looking to get back into the game, caused Reading some problems with Lloyd Dyer lively on the wing and Danns calling Adam Federici into action. Ian Harte then hit the wall with a free kick after Tom Kennedy took out McAnuff, but that was all the action from the first half and Reading left the pitch to applause from the home fans.

Leicester looked to shake things up at half-time and brought on Sol Bamba and Steve Howard for Beckford and Kennedy. The changes made the difference as for the first 20 minutes or so Reading were under heavy pressure with Leicester squandering many half chances, including a half volley from Danny Drinkwater. Nugent and Lee Peltier also went close for the visitors.

The game then started to even up again and both teams were having a real go. Jason Roberts was sent through by Hunt and was seemingly impeded by Bamba went down, but nothing was given. This was to everyone's disbelief as there is no reason that Roberts would have gone down in such a good position.

It was soon after that Reading got their second, with Hunt playing a vital role. He got the ball on the right and beat his man before playing a lovely ball to Roberts, who expertly swept the ball into the net past Schmeichel.

Leicester then had another chance as Dyer shot wide before Hal Robson Kanu followed suit not long after for Reading. However it was soon 3-0 as Simon Church, who came on for Roberts, got on the end of a wonderful cross from Hunt and met it well with a powerful header past Schmeichel to seal the game for Reading.

Danns then got a consolation goal for Leicester with a good finish but it didn't stop the celebrations for Reading fans as the chants of "we are going up" rang round an energetic Madejski Stadium.

It's been a great start to the year for all Reading, but Brian McDermott and his players know that we need to keep this form going and the hard work is still yet to come. It was also a time in which McDermott was given Championship Manager of the Month for February, with Federici also getting Player of the Month.
Mark Lawrence
Blog about football when I have something interesting to say. Support Reading FC for better or worse (usually worse).

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