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Opposition Lowdown: Darren Ferguson’s Peterborough United

Reading kickstart their 2023/24 League One campaign with a home match against Peterborough United. Join us as we take a closer look at the opposition.

Peterborough United v Portsmouth - Sky Bet League One Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images


Peterborough finished last season in sixth place in League One, sneaking into the top six on the final day of the season.

They faced off against Sheffield Wednesday in the playoffs and had the strongest start possible, beating Wednesday 4-0 at home in the first leg. The second leg was an epic encounter, with Wednesday overturning the four-goal deficit, winning 5-1 after extra-time and pushing the match to penalties, where they made their home advantage count, winning 5-3 and setting up a trip to Wembley.

The Royals last faced The Posh in the 2021/22 season, with Reading claiming a 3-1 win at home before a goalless draw at the Weston Homes Stadium.

The boss

Darren Ferguson: Son of the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson, Darren is currently in his fourth stint as manager of The Posh. Having played for the likes of Manchester United, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Wrexham, Ferguson started his managerial career at Peterborough, where he joined the club as player-manager in 2007.

He had a strong start to his managerial career, winning back-to-back promotions with the club, finishing second in League Two in his first full season in 2008 and then securing another second-place finish in League One in 2009. He left the club in November 2009 with the club sitting bottom of the Championship.

A spell at Championship Preston North End followed at the start of 2010, but he didn’t quite see the year out, as he was sacked in December. Ferguson returned to Peterborough in January 2011 and was at the club for another four and a half years, securing promotion back to the Championship via the playoffs.

Peterborough United v Reading - Sky Bet Championship - Weston Homes Stadium Photo by Joe Giddens/PA Images via Getty Images

A stint at Doncaster Rovers followed in 2015, before a second return to The Posh in 2019. He resigned in February 2022 but returned to the club in January this year, where he led the side to a sixth-place finish. All in all, Ferguson has achieved four promotions with Peterborough and will be aiming for a fifth this season.


It has been a busy summer at Peterborough with seven players joining the club and eight leaving. Three of those departures were to fellow League One side Stevenage, with defenders Nathan Thompson and Frankie Kent and midfielder Ben Thompson all signing for Boro.

The largest outgoing saw midfielder Jack Taylor join Ipswich Town, who secured promotion back to the Championship last season. Goalkeeper Christy Pym (Mansfield Town), defender Frankie Kent (Hearts) and midfielders Joe Ward (Derby County) and Oliver Norburn (Blackpool) also left The Posh this summer.

Peterborough boosted their goalkeeping ranks with the signings of Fynn Talley and Nicholas Bilokapic who signed from Brighton & Hove Albion and Huddersfield Town. Defender Romoney Crichlow also joined from Huddersfield, while midfielders Ryan De Havilland and Archie Collins came in from Barnet and Exeter City respectively.

Defender Peter Kioso joined on loan from Rotherham United, while striker Kabongo Tshimanga signed a permanent deal after spending the back end of last season on loan from non-league Chesterfield.

Peterborough’s only doubt for this Saturday’s game is defender Emmanuel Fernandez, who is recovering from a sickness bug.

Ipswich Town v Rotherham United - Emirates FA Cup - Third Round - Portman Road
Peter Kioso, then of Rotherham, now of Peterborough
Photo by Rhianna Chadwick/PA Images via Getty Images

Expected line-up

Bilokapic, Edwards, Knight, Crichlow, Kioso, Collins, Randall, De Havilland, Poku, Mason-Clarke, Clarke-Harris

Key player

Jonson Clarke-Harris: Striker Clarke-Harris joined Peterborough in August 2020, signing from Bristol Rovers. He started his career at Coventry City but only made one appearance for the club before signing for Peterborough, but he did not make a first-team appearance in his first spell at the club.

After a series of loans, Clarke-Harris went on to make permanent moves to Oldham and Rotherham United, before returning to Coventry in 2018. One year later he made the move to Bristol Rovers, where he stayed for a year and a half before returning to Peterborough.

He has seen his strongest goalscoring form while at The Posh, scoring 74 goals for the club, with 29 of those coming last season, when he topped the League One goalscoring charts. He was transfer-listed by the club in the summer but still remains a Posh player at present.

One to watch

Ronnie Edwards: Defender Edwards joined Peterborough from Barnet in August 2020. He started his youth career at Barnet and made two appearances for the club prior to his move to The Posh. He made his debut a month after signing and has since gone on to become a regular starter for Peterborough, having now made 87 appearances for the club.

The highly rated youngster has represented England at under-19 and under-20 level. He has recently been linked with a move to the Premier League, but Peterborough will be hoping to hang onto him as long as possible. The 20-year-old centre-back is a ball-playing defender with strong tackling skills.