Reading recorded an unexpected win against inform Preston last weekend, whilst many of their relegation rivals dropped points - Rotherham in particular conceded six goals! Now another team still with play-off hopes face the Royals in the form of Hull City. The Tigers were completely outplayed at the Mad Stad earlier in the season, so Reading will be looking to do the double over a team for only the second time in 2018/19. Can they build on the momentum from last weekend or will their terrible away record strike again here?
Form (all competitions): WWLDW
All Reading eyes will be looking to the team sheet to see if Nelson Oliveria will start this afternoon’s game. The striker made a miraculous recovery to be named on the bench last weekend, despite being previously having been ruled out for the season with a hamstring problem. Jose Gomes has confirmed that the striker has trained all week but is cautious to risk him so soon which might indicate he might only be used as a sub.
John Swift is a major doubt coming into the game after limping off against Preston. The midfielder has recently seemed to have rediscovered his individual swagger, with a lovely outside of the boot pass that set-in motion the move that contributed to Reading’s first goal last weekend. Mo Barrow will also be assessed for a recurring hamstring strain, but looks the most likely to start out of the two.
Paul McShane is ruled out of this game with an Achilles injury despite only just returning to action after six months out. Sam Baldock played for the Under 23s on Friday as he builds up fitness, whilst Jon Dadi Bodvarsson has only recently returned to training sessions after his injury.
Top Goal Scorer: Yakou Meite (9)
Form (all competitions): WLLDW
Former Reading Boss Nigel Adkins has no major injury concerns coming into this fixture. His team sit in 12th place in the Championship table but are only six points off a play-off position. A win would maintain a late charge for the top six, which Adkins nearly pulled off in his first full season with Reading. Hull actually picked up fewer points than the Royals last month, with only two wins and a draw from five games.
The Tigers can call upon captain Markus Henriksen, who has finished serving his suspension for collecting his tenth booking of the season at Norwich in mid-March. He could be joined by defender Jordy de Wijs and midfielder Dan Batty, who have both recently recovered from long term injuries. Despite the return of these players, Adkins could remain faithful to the same line up that recorded a 2-0 win against Ipswich a week ago.
Top Goal Scorer: Jarrod Bowen (21)
Quick Fire Facts
- Hull haven’t lost at home to Reading since March 1994, winning two and drawing three of the last five games between the two sides at the KCom Stadium.
- Reading may have won 3-0 against the Tigers in September, but haven’t completed a league double over them since the 1986-87 season.
- This time last season, Hull were locked in a relegation battle alongside Reading and finished the campaign with 49 points. They’re already five points better off this time around with seven games left to go.
- Under Jose Gomes, Reading have failed to score in six of their nine matches on the road in all competitions.
A win for Reading would place them in a very favourable position ahead of their rivals, who are facing tougher opposition this weekend. Whilst away from home the Royals have struggled, Hull are prone to throwing must win games away and their play-off hopes are hanging by a thread. I can see this being a nervy match for both sides as they are desperate for a win in order to achieve their goals at opposite ends of the table.
Hull 1-1 Reading