Vito Mannone: 6
Couldn't do anything about either goal and kept Reading vaguely in the game at 2-0 with some excellent close-range saves. Not bad, not great.
Chris Gunter: 5
Pretty poor from an experienced international. Culpable for Sheffield United's second goal, offered little going forward until the last 10 minutes (that'll be a theme with these ratings).
Tiago Ilori: 4
For such an elegant player it remains to be seen how good at actual defending he is. Comical moments aplenty in the second half.
Liam Moore: 5
A tough day for the best defender at the club. No time on the ball and given a bruising in his battle with Leon Clarke. Still more assured than anyone else, though.
Tyler Blackett: 6
Not anywhere near as bad as could be feared. Blackett was actually the Royals’ best attacking outlet in the first half with the usual calamitous defending on one or two occasions.
Joey van den Berg: 5
The usual mix of blood-curdling & hair-raising. Not the worst out there by any means but bypassed way too easily by Marc Duffy etc in the first half. Controlled last 10/15 minutes but too late.
Dave Edwards: 5
Completely anonymous. The Welshman didn't do enough going forward or in defence. I genuinely can't remember a single moment he was a part of, good or bad.
Leandro Bacuna: 5
Equally anonymous, like van den Berg and Edwards he didn't have it easy at all against a United midfield of real quality. Spent most of the game with no forward options.
Roy Beerens: 5
Saved from a 4/10 by his goal. Very poor - hard to see what he offers in an attacking sense. Jaap Stam's faith in him despite continued failure is beginning to smack of real stubbornness.
Sone Aluko: 5
Again, very little imaginative play or quality on the ball. Hard to escape the conclusion we've overpaid for ALuko. In the absence of other in-form options he will continue to start however.
Mo Barrow: 5
Marginally better than the other forwards. But only just. Barrow set up Beerens' goal with the one decent cross of the match.
Paul McShane: 5
Hard to see why he came on. McShane got booked almost immediately before going up front as a battering-ram with little success.
John Swift: 6
Whether it was his entrance or United simply sitting back, Reading actually started to play with him on the pitch. Him or Kelly need to start against Middlesbrough.
Pelle Clement: N/A
If he's the answer, I don't want to know what the question is. He is, of course, Dutch.