Reading's youngsters lost their final group game in the Checkatrade Trophy (EFL Trophy) last night 2-0 at home to Yeovil, ensuring they'd only qualify as group runners-up. That meant an away draw for Martin Kuhl's side and they've been given a tricky tie to contend with.
They'll be taking on Southampton's Under 21 side in the week commencing December 5th at St Mary's. The Premier League's Academy side topped their group with two wins and a draw from games with Crawley, Charlton and Colchester. The Saints also won this competition back in 2010 with a certain Michail Antonio helping them beat Ian Harte and Carlisle.
Both teams will be familiar with each other, having faced off in the Premier League 2 this season, the newly formed Under 23 league. Southampton won their meeting 3-1 back in September at the club's training ground and overall they've had a much more impressive season, sitting 4th to Reading's 9th.
The difference here is that both teams can include a number of senior players should they wish but that's not something Southampton have been overly fond of in the competition so far. The even better news for Reading is that with the senior team in Europa League action that week, senior faces seem even more unlikely. As for us, the game falls between a trip to Fulham and a home game with Sheffield Wednesday so Stam might be more tempted to release a few extra players.
The game is the first of four knock-out games before a Wembley final, so we're just 360 minutes from a day out obviously.
Ticket details will be announced in due course.