Reading take on Cardiff City for the third time in under two weeks, as the sides look to progress through to the fifth round of the FA Cup on Tuesday evening.
Two draws in their last two meetings has makes this a brilliant tie to potentially tune in to, although this match will have to be decided on the night. Extra time? Penalties? This one has the potential to go all the way.
The winner of this tie will play Premier League side Sheffield United in the fifth round of the competition. Here’s everything you need to know ahead of this cup replay in Cardiff.
What? FA Cup Round 4 Replay
Who? Cardiff City
Where? The Cardiff City Stadium
When? Tuesday 4th February 2020 (7:45pm KO)
Our last FA Cup clash
Reading 1 – 1 Cardiff City
Sol Bamba’s sitter proved to be costly for Cardiff as the Royals managed to hold on for a draw with ten men, and a very young backline to finish the game off with.
Callum Paterson was the man to open the scoring at the Madejski Stadium in our last FA Cup clash, giving the away side an early leading after guiding the ball past Sam Walker. It was a disastorous start for the Royals, although they did not have to wait too long to get back in to it. Yakou Meite controlled a perfectly-weighted ball from Charlie Adam, before firing past Alex Smithies to equalise just a few minutes later. This was a great moment for Meite, who had endured a very tough week.
The Ivorian had further chances to put the Royals ahead, although he did have the ball in the back of the net again before half time. However, this was chalked off for offside. Was it offside? It doesn’t look like it from the replays, but it was a tight one for sure.
Neither side were able to break through in the second half, although Tom McIntyre’s sending off gave the Bluebirds a great opportunity to grab a winner. I’m sure McIntyre’s sending off will benefit him for the future, he was outstanding before his dismissal. It could be argued that his sending off was harsh, but Reading managed to survive without him in the end.
Omar Richards, Gabriel Osho, Andre Burley and Teddy Howe all did brilliantly in defence, with a little help from Sol Bamba missing an absolute sitter. If the youngsters do play on Tuesday, let’s hope they perform well again.
The Last Meeting
Cardiff City 1 -1 Reading
The Royals struck first at the Cardiff City Stadium, with Yakou Meite heading the ball in from a John Swift cross in the opening ten minutes. In a game that was quite poor in terms of quality, Callum Paterson scored yet again against the Royals after a goalmouth scrap from a long throw-in.
Cardiff went on to dominate the rest of the match and Rafael had to make a very smart stop, before Charlie Adam’s cross almost looped in to the back of the Cardiff City net. The Royals need to keep hold of their leads when they get them. Getting to 50 points is important, let’s hope we can be victorious over Hull City at the weekend.
Although the sides only sit a few places away from each other in the Championship, Cardiff City have more of a chance of reaching the playoffs this season. If Neil Harris and his side can go on a good run, they may be competing at the top end of the Championship in months to come. They are a Championship side and anything can happen in this division. This applies to both sides, who go head to head once again on Tuesday evening.
- Cardiff City are yet to beat Reading in any of their three meetings this season in all competitions.
- The Bluebirds have won just ten of their 30 league games so far this season. Despite this, they remain in the hunt for a playoff spot. It’s getting tight in and around the playoff places.
- Reading have failed to win a league game since New Years Day – this was a 2-1 win against Fulham.
- The Royals have picked up just three points out of a possible 15 in their last five league games. Let’s hope we can do better in the cup this Tuesday.
Likely Reading lineup: Walker, Richards, Burley, Osho, Gunter, Rinomhota, Adam, McCleary, Aluko Olise, Loader
Going with the inexperienced Andre Burley and Gabriel Osho as predictions for a match against a Championship side is probably a bad call from me, but I can’t see McInytre, Morrison or Moore starting on Tuesday.
The trio started on Friday and Bowen is likely to keep them in the first 11. However, Chris Gunter’s first team opportunities may be limited with Andy Yiadom’s return edging closer. Omar Richards is almost certain to start.
A midfield trio of Charlie Adam, Andy Rinomhota and Michael Olise offers a mix of youth and experience, and the latter is likely to start in a more advanced role in supporting Danny Loader up front. Garath McCleary and Sone Aluko could start on the wings and both will need to be a threat if Reading are to progress through to the next round of the FA Cup.
I’m going for a 2-1 defeat this Tuesday, partly down to the fact that I still think Mark Bowen will prioritise the league over getting knocked out of the cup. If Reading slip down the table because of their concentration on the cup, Bowen could end up being in danger of the sack. The Royals have not performed very well recently, let’s hope they can build some momentum on Tuesday night ahead of the rest of the season.
Score Prediction: Cardiff City 2 – 1 Reading
Other FA Cup fourth round replays
Tuesday 4th February (7:45pm KO unless stated):
Birmingham City vs Coventry City
Derby County vs Northampton Town
Liverpool vs Shrewsbury Town
Oxford United vs Newcastle United (8:05pm KO)
Wednesday 5th February (7:45pm KO):
Tottenham Hotspur vs Southampton