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Reading FC Power Rankings: January 6

The man at the top has changed since our last Reading FC Power Rankings but which players have moved up and down since mid-November?

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1. Oliver Norwood (Last Month: 3, Top 10 Apps: 3)

He's been voted your Reading FC Player of the Month in both November and December and Olly deservedly takes top spot in my power rankings. One of the most consistent performers at the club and knows exactly what his role is, all hail our Northern Irish Xavi.

2. Nick Blackman (Last Month 1, Top 10 Apps: 3)

Blackman took top spot in both of our previous rankings but a run of just two goals since our previous rankings sees him slip just below Norwood this time around. In all likelihood this will be his final appearance in the rankings but it goes to show how important he's been to the club and how the rest of the squad will need to step up, or a decent replacement signed.

3. Stephen Quinn (Last Month 4, Top 10 Apps: 3)

I wrote last time out that Quinn's value to the team had only been enhanced by his time on the sidelines and his re-introduction over the past few games has only gone to show how much we missed him. Performed very well filling in at left-back before a hard working shift sprinkled with moments of quality against Bristol City.

4. Paul McShane (Last Month 2, Top 10 Apps: 3)

McShane drops one after a slightly down period compared to his early season form. With that being said he's still been our most dependable defender even if as captain he's not been able to rally the troops to the level he'd like.

5. Matej Vydra (Last Month: 7, Top 10 Apps: 3)

I can hear the groan coming from Caversham already but sorry Mr Dellor, Matej Vydra is far from useless. While he's not found the net much he's slowly rounding into form and remains one of if not the most talented players we have on the books. More than that it's clear he's up for giving it his all, as evidenced by his stoppage time tackle inside his own half to help set up the winner against City.

6. Chris Gunter (Last Month: 6, Top 10 Apps: 3)

As you were once again for Mr Gunter who has been his usual solid self in the past few games. Dependable but doing little to get over the nagging feeling that his career has probably peaked. With no other recognised right-back at the club he's still vitally important.

7. Danny Williams (Last Month: 8, Top 10 Apps: 2)

Perhaps deserves to be higher on the list but Williams still continues to show an inconsistent streak that's stopping him being named alongside the all-time great Reading midfielders. His goal against Blackburn was inspirational yet plenty of other efforts have found the advertising boards half-way up the stand. You'd also be hoping for more than two assists from someone that's in the team every week.

8. Hal Robson-Kanu (Last Month: 9, Top 10 Apps: 2)

Leads the team in assists with four and has also did a solid job leading the line while not fully fit. I'm still not fully sold on Mr Robson-Kanu but I do understand why he's been picked by so many different Reading & Wales managers.

9. Anton Ferdinand (Last Month: 10, Top 10 Apps: 2)

Anton's got the joint-third highest average rating of any Reading player based on our player ratings but sadly his injury record continues to be a huge source of frustration. One and a half seasons into his two-year deal he's managed a grand total of 11 league starts. When he's played he's class but it's impossible to count on him for the long-term. He's basically our Ledley King/Jonathan Woodgate.

10. Garath McCleary (Last Month: Bottom Five: Top 10 Apps: 2)

This one was a tough one to pick but I'm going to give the edge to Garath McCleary who's longer history with the club sees him nudge just ahead of Orlando Sa. While neither have hit the heights that we know they're capable of, McCleary remains one of our biggest threats and has the proven track record.


Bottom Five (Lowest to highest)

5. Paolo Hurtado (Bottom 5 Apps: 2)

Paolo who?

4. Alex Fernandez (Bottom 5 Apps: 2)

Has made just one squad under Brian McDermott and that was as an unused sub against Blackburn. Safe to say this season isn't working out the way the Spanish midfielder imagined when he signed on loan this summer.

3. Jordan Obita (Bottom 5 Apps: 2)

The winner of our Tilehurst End Podcast 'Hal Robson-Kanu' Underacheiver Award for 2015 has to make this list. While injury has played a big part in his most recent struggles, the fact was he'd already fallen behind Taylor and now Quinn has also shown his ability to fill in. Obita has the benefit of being a player McDermott rated highly during his previous spell but will need to hit the ground running.

2. Michael Hector (Bottom 5 Apps: 2)

His manager for both parent club Chelsea and loan club Reading both got sacked last month so who knows what Hector's long or short-term future is in Berkshire. Sadly based on recent form fans of either are unlikely to clamour for 'Big Hec' to be in the starting lineup anytime soon.

1. Jonathan Bond (Bottom 5 Apps: 2)

Again this is tough but Bond sneaks into the bottom five simply for being dropped yet again. You'd like to hope for his sake that McDermott simply wanted to give Al-Habsi a go or that Bond had a niggle but either way it's another frustrating roadblock for a player that's yet to nail down a regular starting place.


So that's how I see things this month but what about you? Who's too high and who's too low? Let us know in the comments section below.