There’s no midweek break for the Royals, as Neil Harris’ Millwall visit in the Carabao Cup. Both teams will be expected to ring the changes on Tuesday night, and that might mean a second start of the season for ex-Royal Jake Cooper, on his return to the Madejski. Taking the likely starting line-ups into account, here are the three to watch:
It’s fair to say that George Saville was surplus to requirements at Wolves after their summer overhaul, but Wanderers’ loss appears to be Millwall’s gain. The 24-year old centre midfielder, born in nearby Camberley, has hit the ground running at his new club and a string of impressive displays haven’t gone unnoticed.
Saville is very much an all-rounder. He is a sound passer of the ball, who is comfortable dictating the play, but also has combative, disruptive qualities. He has averaged nearly twice as many successful tackles per game as any Reading player this season (4.5), as well as making 2 interceptions per Championship match (Who Scored). So far, Saville is Millwall’s highest-rated player, with an average match rating of 7.52 out of 10, and a ‘Man of the Match’ award (Who Scored). Saville also scored the Lions’ goal in their opening home game of the season, and will be looking to add to his tally on Tuesday night.
This bright, athletic midfielder was considered one of the most exciting young prospects in the Football League a couple of years ago, but perhaps he’ll be disappointed with the opening weeks of his maiden Championship season. Onyedinma has struggled for game-time, having to settle for four substitute appearances. Tuesday night’s trip to Reading provides an ideal opportunity for the Nigerian-born player to stake a claim for a regular starting place.
He is most comfortable on the wing, but has also appeared in an attacking midfield role, with pace and dribbling-ability being his most notable attributes. His skill has not gone unnoticed, and Millwall recently tied him down to a longer-term contract, to ward off supposed interest from QPR, Hull and Watford. Despite his tender age, Onyedinma has already made 108 professional appearances, though his most prolific spell came on loan at Wycombe, where he scored 8 goals in 25 games. Here’s a collection of those goals:
Another player with a point to prove on Tuesday night is former Wimbledon striker Tom Elliot. Having arrived in the summer on a free transfer, Elliot is currently the third-choice marksman at The Den, behind the experienced pairing of Steve Morison and Lee Gregory. On paper however, Tom Elliot has done little wrong – scoring 50% of the London side’s goals since the start of the season. He headed in both goals in Millwall’s first round tie against Stevenage, one of which you can see below:
Standing at 6 foot 4 inches tall, Elliot’s enviable aerial presence will provide a true test to whichever central-defensive combination Jaap Stam selects. He’s also quick and strong, and given his reasonable form, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he found the net once more on Tuesday night.