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Loan Report: Mixed Fortunes Over Festive Period

We check back in with how Reading’s loanees have done across Europe in the last few weeks.

Northampton Town v Cambridge United - Sky Bet League Two Photo by Pete Norton/Getty Images

It’s been an extended break over the holidays for the loan report, but now the festivities are done we are back. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and New Year, now let’s see whether the Royals loanees had a good Christmas too.

As we know in England, the festive period brings up an unrelenting schedule for our teams. Gabriel Osho at Yeovil Town was no different as they were involved in four games in 11 days. The first was a trip to struggling AFC Fylde, in which Yeovil had to come back from 2-0 to rescue a point. Osho played the full 90 and scored the first goal of the game. Unfortunately for him however it was in his own net as he gave the hosts the lead. Two in two minutes from Courtney Duffus towards the end completed a comeback.

Their Boxing Day game and the first of two games in six days against Torquay saw Yeovil steam roll their opposition with an emphatic 6-2 win. Three goals in the opening 15 mins set the Glovers on their way and three more goals in the second half completed the rout. Osho played the full 90 minutes once again in this game. Two days later Yeovil travelled to London to take on Sutton United but were defeated 3-2. Osho started the game but was taken off with 25 minutes to go, just as Sutton grabbed their third.

On New Year’s Day, Yeovil travelled to Torquay in the reverse of the Boxing Day fixture. An ill-tempered game finished 2-0 to the visitors, with each side having a man sent off. Chris Dagnall was sent off for Yeovil after 12 minutes but went 1-0 up just four minutes later. With ten minutes to go, Torquay were reduced to ten men, and in injury time Yeovil grabbed their second to settle the game. Osho was brought on as an injury time sub.

Cambridge United have been involved in six games in League Two since our last loan report. Sam Smith has played the full 90 minutes in five of the six matches, but only scored one goal. On the 21st, Cambridge hosted Leyton Orient in a game that the visitors won 3-2. Orient led 3-0 at half time but two second-half goals, one of which came from the penalty spot from Smith, was not enough to complete a comeback. Both sides had a man sent off in this game.

On Boxing Day Cambridge travelled to Swindon Town and were comfortably beaten 4-0. A few days later back at the Abbey Stadium, Cambridge hosted strugglers Morecambe and managed a 1-0 win. New Year’s Day saw Cambridge again play at home, this time hosting Mansfield Town, and it was the visitors who left Cambridge with all three points thanks to a 3-2 win. The next game came on January 4 as the Us travelled to Macclesfield and were beaten 1-0. Their last game came last weekend as Cambridge travelled to Exeter and were beaten 2-0. Smith started the game but was brought off with 15 minutes to go.

After going on a run of no wins in 11 games, Luke Southwood’s Hamilton picked up some much-needed points in the SPL over Christmas, winning two of their three games. The first came against fellow strugglers Hearts with Hamilton winning by a 2-1 scoreline, with former Reading man Oliver Bozanic on the scoresheet for the visitors. A turn of fortunes on Boxing Day however saw Hamilton lose once again, this time at home to St Johnstone in a game that Hamilton will certainly felt they should have won.

The Accies got back to winning ways just a few days later with a superb 2-1 win away at Motherwell. After going 1-0 down inside five mins, a second half comeback turned the game around and sealed a win for Hamilton, who have put a bit of breathing room between themselves and Hearts at the bottom. Southwood played the full 90 minutes in all three of these games. The goalkeeper has now returned to Reading but reports suggest the Scottish side are keen to bring the youngster back after he had established himself in the side over the past few weeks.

Dagenham and Redbridge are a team in a bit of turmoil at the moment after a poor run of form has seen manager Peter Taylor leave the club. Two defeats and a draw over the Christmas period was not enough for the former England caretaker boss to keep his job. Taylor did give Reading loanee Ben House a chance in the Boxing Day fixture at home to fellow strugglers Ebbsfleet, managed by former Reading midfielder Kevin Watson.

House played the full 90 in this 1-1 draw but could not help his team to a much-needed win. On New Year’s Day, these two teams played in the reverse fixture and Ben House played the full 90 once again, but this game also finished 1-1 like the match on Boxing Day.

With their current run of form, you could perhaps say this moment has been a long time coming, but Atletico Baleares finally fell off top spot in the Segunda Division B, thanks to a 3-0 defeat away at Marino de Luanco. This game came on December 22, before the short winter break that takes place in Spain. Jordan Holsgrove started the game for the Islanders but was brought off on the hour with the score 1-0 to Marino. Not long after the Scotsman’s departure, the hosts quickly added two goals to complete the victory.

After a short winter break, Baleares returned to league action this past Sunday with a 2-1 win over Pena Deportiva. Atletico scored both of their goals in the opening 25 minutes, one coming from Reading loanee Jordan Holsgrove who converted an outstanding free kick. The visitors pulled one back with 20 minutes to go but Baleares held on for the win and sit second in the table on goal difference.

Last weekend Baleares made it two wins from two after the winter break, beating Langreo 3-1. The visitors took the lead in the game but two minutes later Baleares drew level, and a few minutes before half time Balaeres took the lead. Shortly after half time Baleares made it 3-1 and the score remained the same for the rest of the game. Jordan Holsgrove played the full 90 minutes as Atletico turned the game around. They remain second in the league level on points with Atletico Madrid B.

It’s been a difficult few weeks for Mo Barrow at Denizlispor. Two Super Lig games over the festive period and two games without a win for the Turkish side. A couple of days before Christmas, Denizlispor were put to the sword at home by Alanyaspor, losing 5-1. Barrow played the full 90 in this one but could do little to help his team avoid this defeat.

On the 28th, the Roosters this time travelled to Ankaragucu and picked up a 2-2 draw away from home, but Barrow was sent off after just 10 minutes. He attempted to control a lose header, but his foot was raised, and he studded an opposition player on the arm. Completely accidental but easy to see why the referee made the decision.

KSV Roeselare’s surprising run of form continued in a fixture just before Christmas as they drew 1-1 at home to Union Saint-Gilloise. The visitors took the lead just a minute before half time, but five minutes into the second half Roeselare drew level, with neither team being able to go on and find a winner. Tom Holmes played the full 90 minutes in this game.

After a winter break in Belgium, Roeselare made their return to competitive action last weekend with a 1-1 draw away at Beerschot Wilrijk. The hosts took the lead just four minutes into the game, and lead for the majority of the game until Roeselare equalised with fifteen minutes to go and managed to grab a point. Tom Holmes played the full 90 minutes once again, and helped his side become one of four teams level on ten points.

Sunderland had a pretty busy Christmas period and put together a decent run of form, but the same could not be said for Marc McNulty. Despite the Black Cats playing five games, McNulty was on the bench for all five and only came off the bench three times, for a minimal number of minutes each time.

McNulty came off the bench in Sunderland’s two draws and their latest win in this period, including Boxing Day at home to Bolton, and then on New Year’s Day away at Fleetwood, and most recently in Sunderland’s emphatic 4-0 win over Wycombe. In the other two games that Phil Parkinson’s side won however away at Doncaster and at home to Lincoln, McNulty was an unused sub.