For the second time in a week, the Royals will head up the M1 to Yorkshire in search of three points, this time taking on Chris Wilder’s high-flying Blades at Bramall Lane.
Form & Team News
Reading (all comps): D D L L L W
After weeks of being as busy as the IDR at rush hour, the Reading FC medical centre finally seems to be clearing out. As reported by The Tilehurst End earlier this week, Paul McShane and Yann Kermorgant will take fitness tests on Friday to see if they are able to join the squad for their trip to Sheffield, whilst John Swift should be able to at least make the bench at Bramall Lane.
Following their hard-earned win at Elland Road last week, the Royals will be hoping to make it consecutive wins for the first time in the league this season and will be able to name the same squad as last Saturday in their attempts to do so.
Sheffield United (all comps): W L W W L W
The Blades have had a blistering start to the season, defying the expectations of many to sit third in the Championship table, just two points off leaders Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Moreover, Bramall Lane is already proving to be a fortress, with Norwich being the only side to have claimed anything from a trip to South Yorkshire so far this season. Even the aforementioned big-spending Wolves left Sheffield empty-handed, meaning the Royals will really have their work cut out to take anything off the newly-promoted side.
The Blades did lose defender Kieron Freeman to injury last week against Ipswich Town however, meaning that Chris Wilder will be unable to name an unchanged squad for the visit of the Royals. He will though be able to consider George Baldock, who faces a late fitness test to determine if he has recovered sufficiently from his calf injury in time to take on Jaap Stam’s men.
The Royals will be buoyant after last week’s win over Leeds, but this rediscovered confidence may not be enough to topple a Sheffield United side who are currently steamrolling their way through the Championship.
This is a side that won last year’s League One at a canter, accruing 100 points in the process. With more Championship wins this season than any other side so far (eight), they appear to have carried this winning mentality over to the 2017/18 campaign, making a Royals victory seem a big ask.
However, Reading proved last week that they can indeed grind out a result when the form books suggest they should not, something I think they can do again this Saturday. I cannot see us winning, but we should have enough for a point: 1-1.
Can the Royals make it back-to-back wins in Yorkshire?
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