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Bournemouth vs Reading: Player Ratings

Reading’s display at Bournemouth was very much a performance of two halves, so we’ve rejigged the Player Ratings format accordingly.

AFC Bournemouth v Reading - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images

Reading put in such a Jekyll and Hyde performance against Bournemouth that, as we’ve done a few times before, we’ve decided to grade both the first- and second-half performances. The overall grade is a little subjective, trying to take into account a player’s contribution over the whole 90 minutes, rather than just being an amalgamation of the two 45-minute scores.

Rafael: 4

First half: 6

Second half: 3

Another pretty dire mistake defined his game - this time he got his clearance all wrong when chased down by Dominic Solanke, lost the ball under pressure and gifted an easy chance to score. It’s the latest in a series of errors he’s unexpectedly made - previously getting a pass wrong against Stoke City for 2-0, and flapping at a long-range effort at Coventry City. Luke Southwood will understandably think this is his time to get a run in the first team.

His first half however was pretty quiet, despite some poor distribution, with Rafael making an acrobatic stop to keep out a free kick just before the break.

Tomas Esteves: 5

First half: 7

Second half: 4

An odd afternoon for Esteves who had a very encouraging first half against Bournemouth, showing plenty of maturity and concentration, but then lost those qualities after the break. Esteves lost Danjuma for 2-2, allowing the Bournemouth man to get goal side of him into space. He struggled increasingly as the second half went on, and was withdrawn for Tom Holmes.

Michael Morrison: 6

First half: 7

Second half: 6

Fantastic in the first half, dealing really well with pretty much everything that came his way. Snuffed out danger like the seasoned pro he is. I wouldn’t have him as the main culprit in any of the four goals in the second half, but he could have recognised the danger from Danjuma quicker for 2-2.

Liam Moore: 6

First half: 7

Second half: 6

A solid first half, but probably quieter than Morrison in terms of the danger that came his way. However, really needed to deal with the cross that Solanke converted for 1-2, with the ball just evading Moore before the Bournemouth man tucked it home.

Omar Richards: 6

First half: 7

Second half: 6

One of Reading’s more consistent players across the 90, Richards looked solid defensively throughout. As with Esteves on the other side, Richards had presumably been asked to stay a lot deeper rather than pushing on, and that helped him keep things pretty tight. Didn’t push forwards too much, but did set up Semedo for a first-half header with a nice cross.

AFC Bournemouth v Reading - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Robin Jones - AFC Bournemouth/AFC Bournemouth via Getty Images

Andy Rinomhota: 5

First half: 7

Second half: 5

Rino was one of my defensive stand-outs for Reading in the first half, protecting the box really well. He wasn’t asked to push forward as much, instead being allowed to concentrate on doing a job in Reading’s third. Didn’t contribute on the ball enough for me at 2-2 and 3-2, and should have closed down Lewis Cook much quicker - even if he wasn’t expecting the sheer quality of strike from the Bournemouth midfielder.

Josh Laurent: 5

First half: 7

Second half: 5

Similarly impressive defensively as his midfield partner Rinomhota, looking very comfortable in his deep-lying role in front of the defence. Needed more from him in the second half as Reading tried to change the game.

Sone Aluko: 5

First half: 6

Second half: 4

Aluko’s afternoon was up and down before half time, let alone after it. He doubled Reading’s lead with an intelligent run and smart finish from Ejaria’s through ball, but should have done better with a through ball from Joao. His set pieces were also poor, wasting two good free kicks.

After the break he needed to do a much better job of protecting Esteves, with Bournemouth looking threatening down that side. However, he switched off for both of the Cherries’ first two goals, making it too easy for the home side to create chances down that flank. Replaced by Olise.

Alfa Semedo: 5

First half: 7

Second half: 4

Great work to win the penalty - in Ejaria-esque fashion, he got to the byline and danced towards goal with some snazzy footwork before being taken out by Begovic. Perhaps should have made it 2-0 with a header from a Richards cross, going just wide of the far post. Also wasted a really good first-half counter attack when Reading had committed men forwards, but his pass to Ejaria was poor and easily cut out.

Not in the game after the break much though, going back to the old Semedo of offering little in the number 10 role, and was eventually brought off for Baldock.

Ovie Ejaria: 6

First half: 7

Second half: 4

A pretty low-key afternoon for Ejaria, but with the highlight of a lovely assist for Aluko. Really good vision and execution to play his fellow forward in behind for 2-0. He was otherwise not as involved in the game as he would have liked to be, but I’ve bumped him up to a 6/10 (rather than a 5/10) for providing probably Reading’s best moment of creativity all afternoon.

Lucas Joao: 5

First half: 6

Second half: 4

Made it 10 goals for the season with a well-taken penalty, and had some good chances to get to 11. Failed to shoot from the edge of the box at one point in the first half, and put a second-half effort straight at the keeper when going either side probably would have made it 3-0. Almost equalised for 3-3 late on, only for Begovic to stop his header on the line.

He was generally pretty quiet in his all-round play, bar slipping Aluko in behind at one point in the first half. The game was against Reading after the break and Joao was increasingly isolated - not necessarily his fault.

Subs

Tom Holmes: 6

Replaced Esteves at right back at 2-2, and helped shore up that part of the pitch nicely. Didn’t add too much pushing forwards though.

Michael Olise: 5

Came on in place of Aluko in the same double substitution as Holmes. Less involved than he has been in previous weeks, and wasted one free kick in particularly poor fashion, passing the ball short straight to a Bournemouth man - nowhere near a teammate.

Yakou Meite: 5

He got the last 15 minutes of the game and was pretty anonymous; I can’t remember him doing much. In his defence, he was used in an unfamiliar left-wing spot - not the best place to get the most out of him.

Sam Baldock: N/A

Replaced Semedo on 80 minutes, and didn’t have enough time to get a grade.


Full-match average: 5.28/10

First half: 6.72/10

Second half: 4.57/10

Who was your man of the match across the whole 90 minutes at Bournemouth? Vote below or through this link.

Who was your MOTM against Bournemouth?
Michael Morrison
Liam Moore
Omar Richards
Ovie Ejaria
Lucas Joao
Other
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