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April 16 - Leicester City (H)

So who are we playing?: Leicester City at the Madejski Stadium.


Where are Leicester in the Championship? 9th

Recent Form? Very up and down. Leicester have spent most of 2011 inside the top half and flirting with the playoff places without ever actually getting into them. Their last five games include two wins, two draws and one defeat, including a 3-3 draw away at Middlesbrough and a 3-0 win over Scunthorpe.

Last time we played them? Gylfi Sigurdsson's scored his last goal in a Reading shirt, before Matt Mills headed in late on to give us our first win of the season, in a 2-1 win at the Walkers.

Any former Royals? Nope, Leicester are a Royal free zone, though they did nick Mark McGhee off us in 1994, with winger Scott Taylor signing shortly after.

Tilehurst End Thoughts In Brief:

We come into this game on the back of seven straight wins, with results in midweek meaning we're now just three points away from an automatic promotion place (though it could be as much as five should Norwich beat Forest tonight). It's almost unbelievable to think we could be second come 5 o'clock tomorrow, but suddenly that's a very real possibility. Our performance against Scunthorpe wasn't our best this season, but just as we did against Preston, we found a way to win and that sort of drive is going to be crucial in these final four weeks of the season.

Tomorrow will be our toughest test at home for quite a while though. Leicester are managed of course by former England boss Sven-Goran Eriksson, who's bought a host of former Premier League and European stars to the Walkers, including Yakubu, Darius Vassell and Portuguese keeper Ricardo. However, despite the array of talent at his disposal, Sven hasn't been able to get consistency from his team, a fact that means the Foxes are four points off the playoffs going into these last four games.

Reading FC Match Preview Image

In our meeting at the Walkers earlier this season it was the Royals who came out on top with a 2-1 win, in what turned out to be Gylfi Sigurdsson's final game for the club. It was a real rearguard action that day, with Matt Mills particularly inspirational in a makeshift backline that saw Shaun Cummings play at left back.

Our record at home to Leicester isn't amazing, with just one home win in six league meetings, with the lone win coming in our Championship winning season.  My own memory of Leicester at home is turning up one New Years Day, slightly worse for wear, and having the game postponed at half time due to a waterlogged pitch, before we lost the replayed game 2-0 later in the season.

Team wise Brian McDermott will be hoping that Jem Karacan is fit after going off late against Scunthorpe, but otherwise he should have a full squad to choose from, with Noel Hunt possibly in line to replace Mathieu Manset alongside Shane Long.

Prediction wise, I'm keeping to this routine of predicting doom, so I'll say 2-1 Leicester.

Other Match Previews

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Leicester OS

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Reading Mad

Reading Guide

Royals Rendezvous

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