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Reading vs Oxford United: Match Preview 2023/24

The Thames Valley derby is on the horizon...

Oxford United v Bolton Wanderers - Sky Bet League One Photo by Andrew Kearns - CameraSport via Getty Images

Reading will be desperate to secure all three points against rivals Oxford United this evening.

There hasn’t been much excitement going into this game, but with the off-field situation in mind, that isn’t a massive surprise.

Two sides at opposite ends of the table will both feel they have a chance of getting three points, with the U’s perhaps the favourites despite the fact they don’t have the home advantage and haven’t done well under Des Buckingham so far.

However, this is a very difficult game to predict, and it will be interesting to see what unfolds.

Ahead of the game, we have your preview.

What? League One Matchday 20

Season? 2023/24

Who? Oxford United

Where? Select Car Leasing Stadium

When? Tuesday 12th December

Time? 8pm

Opposition Manager? Des Buckingham

The Royals

Saturday was very disappointing - but we didn’t perform badly at times and we can’t get too downbeat ahead of this important game.

Our off-field situation has spoilt the atmosphere ahead of this game, but it should be an enjoyable match if we can perform to our potential.

We can’t be written off in this game - but we will need to fight against the odds to get a win.

The Opponents

I actually went to see Liam Manning’s last game in charge of the U’s, when they played Maidenhead in the FA Cup.

They weren’t brilliant that day, but they did show some promise and it’s clear that they have players who can make a difference.

Billy Bodin was an attacking threat and they have other players who can be game-changers, including Ruben Rodrigues and Tyler Goodrham.

They will be a dangerous opponent tonight - and we can’t get too excited about the fact they lost 3-0 against Peterborough United at the weekend.

Being born in Oxford and even playing for the U’s at one point, Buckingham will know the rivalry between tonight’s opponents and will be desperate to get three points on the board.

My Lineup

Starting XI: Button, Dorsett, Abbey, Bindon, Yiadom, Craig, Wing, Vickers, Knibbs, Azeez, Smith

With David Button starting in goal at the weekend, he should probably retain his place, although I would’ve given another start to Joel Pereira on Saturday.

Clinton Mola didn’t perform terribly against Barnsley, but Jeriel Dorsett has to come back in if he’s fit, with Nelson Abbey and Tyler Bindon starting at centre-back again. Andy Yiadom retains his place on the right-hand side.

The familiar duo of Michael Craig and Lewis Wing start once more, with Harvey Knibbs playing central again and Femi Azeez on the right. Caylan Vickers gets a start for me over Paul Mukairu, with the teenager able to change a game.

And up top, Sam Smith starts once more. He will want to get himself on the scoresheet sooner rather than later to build his confidence after going a run of games without scoring.

Score Prediction: Reading 1-1 Oxford United