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Reading vs Sheffield United: Player Ratings

How the Royals performed in Scott Marshall’s first match in charge.

Reading v Crystal Palace - Pre-Season Friendly Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Anssi Jaakkola: 6

Bar the goals, which he wasn’t really at fault for, he didn’t have a huge amount to do. Made some decent saves to keep the score down, and his distribution was OK.

Andy Yiadom: 5

Got forward really well in the first half to stretch the play down the right-hand side, putting in some decent crosses - which would have worked better if we’d had a target man in the middle. Pinned back more in the second half, and lost Billy Sharp at the back post for the opener.

Tiago Ilori: 5

A pretty good night for Ilori, although he was just a second or so too slow on a few occasions, such as when McGoldrick burst past him to go through on goal in the first half. Didn’t get tight enough to McGoldrick for the first goal, and the striker flicked the ball on for Sharp to tap in.

Tyler Blackett: 6

A mature, confident performance from a man who’s adjusted well to life at centre-half. Won his headers well and marshalled United’s strike duo pretty well.

Chris Gunter: 7

Much better from Gunter who looked far more confident at left-back than he has done in recent weeks. Pushed forward well in the first-half, less so after the break. Crucially cleared the ball off the line in the second half to keep the scores level.

Josh Sims: 5

A frustrating night for the Southampton loanee who was finally given a first-team start. Reading switching to a 4-4-2, using width and pace more, seemed to suit his style, but he let himself down with poor decision making on a few occasions.

One moment in the first-half illustrated that for me. In plenty of space on the right wing, he should have cut inside into a dangerous area onto his stronger left foot, but instead rushed a cross with his weaker right.

Andy Rinomhota: 5

A bit sloppier than usual, he perhaps struggled with the switch from a three-man midfield to a duo (himself and Bacuna). Didn’t make his usual lung-busting forward runs quite as often, so bringing a defensive midfielder back in, behind Rinomhota, should help the youngster in future.

Leandro Bacuna: 5

Kept things ticking over nicely in the middle for Reading, but not enough attacking impact. Like Rinomhota, he’ll want to play higher up the pitch in a midfield three rather than deeper in a two.

Garath McCleary: 5

For me he was one of Reading’s best threats in the first half, mostly playing down the left although he occasionally switched with Sims. Linked up with Gunter pretty well, stretched the play and tried to cut inside when he could. That said, he didn’t create anything clear-cut, and tired in the second half.

Marc McNulty: 5

Led the line for Reading and struggled to get into the match against United’s big, physical centre halves. That’s not necessarily his fault - it wasn’t the right role for him - but he’ll need to adapt his own game if he’s to have an impact on nights like that.

Danny Loader: 5

Like McNulty, he had difficulty getting into the game, particularly in the second half. Tried to find pockets of space before running at the defence, but didn’t manage that enough to have a proper impact on proceedings.

Subs

Modou Barrow: 5

No attacking impact, didn’t get tight enough to the crosser in the build-up to United’s first.

Sam Baldock: 5

No attacking impact.

Sone Aluko: N/A

No attacking impact.

Average: 5.3/10

Who was your man of the match against Sheffield United? Vote below, or through this link.

Who was your man of the match against Sheffield United?
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