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Reading FC v Blackburn Rovers: Match Preview

Newly appointed Brian McDermott takes to the Reading hot seat to oversee his first match in charge since his return as manager was confirmed on Thursday. Blackburn are the visitors and Phil Owtram provides a preview of the match.

Reading

Form (all comps): LLLLW

Newly-appointed Reading manager Brian McDermott is facing a shortage of defenders for his first match back in charge of the side he managed until 2013. A trio of injuries during Wednesday’s defeat to Hull mean Andrew Taylor (ribs), Anton Ferdinand (groin) and Chris Gunter (cut eye) remain doubts.

There was positive injury news on Wednesday as Stephen Quinn returned to the bench almost two week ahead of schedule after injury. Midfielder Aaron Tshibola (ankle) is due to return in the New Year.

The day before it was confirmed Brian McDermott would return as Reading’s manager the Royals suffered a cruel defeat to Hull City as their barron run continues. Reading now only have one win to their name in their last 10 matches and Wednesday’s result was their fourth defeat on the trot. McDermott takes over a side low on confidence but one that put in a good performance against Hull, hampered by a succession of injuries which prevented caretaker manager, Martin Khul’s side from taking anything from the game.

Reading dominated the first half and went into the break with a deserved 1-0 advantage thanks to a brilliant team goal, finished by Nick Blackman. Injuries then struck and Hull turned the game on its head to give Khul his second defeat of his stint as caretaker and prevent his side taking anything from the game. McDermott certainly has some work to do to get Reading firing again but there were promising signs on Wednesday night that there is an opportunity for Brian to help Reading achieve something this season.

Reading vs. Blackburn:20 December 2015 15:00 KO Madejski Stadium, ReadingReferee: Peter Bankes

Blackburn

Form (all comps): DWWDW

Former Royals midfielders Hope Akpan and Danny Guthrie could both feature against their former club. Fode Koita may continue in attack with Jordan Rhodes and defender Doneil Henry could return after a hamstring injury.

Paul Lambert was appointed Blackburn boss in mid-November and since then his side have gone unbeaten with three wins and two draws from his first five games. Rovers sit in 11th place, a point and two places above Reading in 13th.

Blackburn’s last win at the Madejski Stadium came two seasons ago when they secured a 1-0 victory thanks to a Craig Conway goal. Blackburn have only lost to Reading once in their history, a 4-0 defeat in 1986 when both sides were playing in the old Division Two.

Reading (v Preston): J. Bond, C. Gunter, A. Ferdinand (J. Cooper 65), P. McShane, A. Taylor (Alex 52), M. Hector, G. McCleary (H. Robson-Kanu 75), D. Williams, O. Norwood, N. Blackman, M. Vydra.

Blackburn (v Nottm Forest): J. Steele, M. Olsson, G. Hanley, A. Henley, C. Conway, D. Guthrie (C. Evans 65), B. Marshall (C. Taylor 74), H. Akpan (L. Williamson 83), J. Rhodes, F. Koita.

Last Five Meetings

11 Apr 2015: Reading 0-0 Blackburn (Championship)

01 Nov 2014: Blackburn 3-1 Reading (Championship)

22 Feb 2014: Reading 0-1 Blackburn (Championship)

23 Nov 2013: Blackburn 0-0 Reading (Championship)

29 Mar 2008: Reading 0-0 Blackburn (Premier League)

Head To Head

Reading v Blackburn: W:1 D:8 L:6

YouTube History

Prediction

Reading 1-1 Blackburn