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My Madejski Memories: Alan Giles

Our next personal recollections of our time at the Mad Stad takes us back to 1998.

Reading v Chelsea - Premier League Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images

To mark Reading’s 500th game at the Mad Stad this Saturday against Burton Albion, we’ll be sharing all of our favourite moments from the greatest sporting arena on earth.

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First Game

August 22 1998: Reading 3 Luton 0

Who would have thought Grant Brebner, one of the transfer period Scottish unknowns signed by Tommy Burns, would write his name in history as the first goalscorer in our wonderful plastic palace?

Game you missed but wish you were there

January 30 2013: Reading 2 Chelsea 2

To my great disappointment I had to go to a dinner in Oxford. I left early and listened to the commentary while driving home. Unbelievably I missed Le Fondre’s two late goals, as they were scored while I stopped for petrol.

Reading v Chelsea - Premier League Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images

Best Game

May 16 2001: Reading 2 Wigan 1 (Playoff Semifinal, Second Leg)

The roller coaster of emotions from Cureton’s stoppage time saved penalty being swept on the rebound by the onrushing Forster will live long in the memory.

Worst Game

March 1 2014: Reading 1 Yeovil 1

We could surely beat a bottom of the table side when they went down to ten men, couldn’t we? Or nine? Or eight?

Best Reading Goal

August 20 2005: Reading 5 Millwall 0

Bobby Convey against Millwall. A thrilling run from deep in our own half, slaloming past several challenges, and an exquisite finish. All from a player that had, until then, been rather underwhelming.

Best Opposition Goal

January 16 1999: Reading 0 Bristol Rovers 6

Can’t remember which of Cureton’s four in twenty minutes impressed me most, but an outrageous demonstration of great finishing. Thank goodness he went on to spend the best years of his career with us.

Comedy Moment

October 30 2012: Reading 5 Arsenal 7

OK, it was only the Carabao Cup, but surely it’s impossible to throw away a four goal lead, even against top-notch opposition. But we managed it with aplomb.

One thing you would change

DJ Motormouth [Ed: Or Megaparty, as we like to call him]. OK, the guy is a pro, but his contrived attempts to whip up the crowd, reading from a pre-prepared script which betrays he hasn’t watched the match (perhaps any football match) is frankly embarrassing.

Please do get in touch if you would like to take part in this series.