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Reading FC v Charlton: 3 Things To Look Out For

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The Royals are looking for their second win in a week. But what should we expect from today's opponents Charlton Athletic? Will Jones has had a look and gives us three things for us to keep an eye out for...

Clive Rose

1) Charlton sitting deep

If there is one statistic that sticks out for the team from South East London, it's the 119 chances they have created this season. This is the least amount in the Championship and can be partly explained by the league's bottom team Blackpool being the only team that have had more game time in their own half than Charlton.

It seems The Addicks are quite happy to sit deep and soak up the pressure. Bob Peeters' side tend to line up either 4-4-2 or 4-4-1-1 and their decent start to the season has been aided by a settled core with their central backs, former Royal André Bikey and Tal Ben Haim, and central midfielders, captain Johnnie Jackson and Yoni Buyens, only missing two games combined.

2) Will Bob Peeters recall Igor Vetokele?

If there's one player which shows Charlton's improvement from last season it is Igor Vetokele. The 22 year old signed from FC Copenhagen has been a significant upgrade on the poor hapless (and the most unconfident professional I have seen in my 21 years of watching football) former Reading academy striker Simon Church. Vetokele is just one goal shy of Church's record of eight goals from last season despite playing just 16 games.

The Angolan international is everything that Reading fans have been pining for since Shane Long left the Madejski Stadium. He is quick and powerful, and, as the video below shows, a deadly finisher. Vetokele has had to make do with appearances from the bench in the last two games, following a period out through injury, but Bob Peeters may now feel he is ready to start against one of the league's worst defences.

3) Jamie Mackie having a party

If the return of Vetokele is a worry for Reading, then the absence of Charlton's left back Rhoys Wiggins may raise spirits. Wiggins has only missed one game this season and that was the Addicks' 3-0 defeat away at Fulham. At Craven Cottage, Morgan Fox (the footballer not the Playboy model) started and, according to Charlton blog Chris Powell's Flatcap, he struggled and was substituted on 68 minutes.

Right backs Chris Solly and Lawrie Wilson are other options to replace Wiggins. But whoever Charlton pick, Reading's in-form Jamie Mackie may see this an opportunity to cause havoc. A right footed left back would surely only help a player who likes nothing more than using his pace to go on the outside of his opposing full back.

All stats are from Squawka and WhoScored