Skip to main content

Barnsley 1-1 Reading

A dismal performance against bottom of the league Barnsley saw Reading somewhat fortuitously clinch a draw. The home side had more possession (55-45), more shots (19-8), more shots on target (6-3), and more corners (7-3) than The Royals and that really sums up the game.

In the first period Barnsley dominated, having 10 shots to Reading's 2 but there was a spark at the start of the second half that saw Hal-Robson Kanu strike from 25 yards out right into the corner of The Tykes net on the 51st minute. Le Fondre was also clean through just prior to the goal, but Butland managed to repel the forward before the follow up was shot wide. Later in the half ALF was through again, this time set-up by Akpan but again the goalkeeper was up to the poacher's effort.

In the battle of the young English goalkeeper it seemed as if though McCarthy had come off better. Butland, although being a good shot stopper, wasn't overly good at coming and claiming balls, a few times miscalculating. However late on Tomasz Cywka, who played briefly at the Madejski, came on and immediately made an impact; being involved in Barnsley's build-up before O'Grady finished for 1-1.

A point away from home is never awful, but against a team like Barnsley - especially after going a goal up - many fans will feel that we should have gone on to secure a victory. On the other hand, that point takes us up to fifth in a congested Championship table. A trip away to top of the league Burnley on Saturday could be a different story, but unbeaten in 6 and only two goals conceded is still a great run.

The only problem, and I hate to bring this up every time, is scoring from open play. Hal's goal came out of absolutely nothing, but there were several chances - many from ALF - that just weren't taken. Billy Sharp did get a couple of minutes at the end of the game, and Jobi McAnuff had a 15 minute run out, and hopefully these two will have a positive effect at that end of the field. By the sounds of it a couple of tweaks of formation saw us become a bigger threat, before allowing Barnsley to come back onto us. Adkins tinkers with the system a lot, but if you look at runs that Reading have been on in the past it's been a lot about consistency, and resolute performances. Hopefully Guthrie going off was nothing serious, as the current system seems to be built around him and we'll certainly need him against Burnley.

Onwards to Turf Moor!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Reading FC Season Review | 2020/2021

When your season starts with your manager having to watch your opening match from the hotel because he's not been hired in time to beat the quarantine, anything above getting relegated should probably be classed as a success. And Reading exceeded surely even the most optimistic of pre-season predictions. Veljko Paunovic Veljko Paunovic almost exclusively utilised a core group of players in a 4-2-3-1, only changing things when enforced. One of the consequences of that is that Reading had more players play over 3,000 minutes than any other side (roughly three-quarters of the season). That consistency is often seen as a good thing, but in a condensed season, it surely contributed to the injury woes. It can't have helped that the manager also used the second-fewest number of players over the course of the season. His substitutions were often categorised as late (Reading's subs played just 16 minutes on average, only Norwich's played fewer) or non-existent (Reading were 19t

The Big Man Cometh

In the grand scheme of things, I consider myself a bit of an Andy Carroll sceptic. Reading have a penchant for signing players that spend the majority of their time in the physio room, and Carroll aligns with that transfer policy to a tee. It must be said that given the lack of other options, and a short term deal that has no real risk for the club, there isn't any big downside in gambling on the Geordie. With that being said, even I was calling out for the introduction for The Big Man at half-time on Saturday. Reading had a heap of possession just outside the box in the opening forty-five but couldn't translate that into chances. Drinkwater had a tame shot saved after good work from Yiadom, but the best chance of the half fell to Puscas after a fortuitous deflection off a Forest player. The flag went up for offside but it didn't matter as the striker couldn't convert anyway. Both managers had done a fairly good job at negating the other side's strengths. Forest'

Reading 2-2 Huddersfield Town

It is frankly unbelievable that Reading managed to lose a match where they were so in control. Huddersfield didn't have a shot for the best part of forty-five minutes, and it's no real surprise that they only came back into the game after Paunovic's substitutions. It's likely that they're still managing Swift's minutes, there's no point injuring him in a game like this, and Olise was clearly struggling but to replace them with Tetek and Moore shows a depressingly defensive outlook. Sone or Camara was right there, Veljko. Reading's midfield quartet ended up too deep, and too narrow. It moved Reading to a 5-4-1, but with a quartet solely made up of central players who were clearly not completely comfortable in the role they were being asked to perform. Huddersfield had far too much time and space inside the Reading half, with all four midfielders largely looking to camp out in front of the defence. Rinomhota hands across the Huddersfield player, but that l