When : Tuesday 22nd October, 7.45pm
Where : Loftus Road Stadium, South Africa Road, London, W12 7PA
Capacity : 18,439
Away Stand : School End (Upper Tier)
What might I see in the area : Steptoe & Son
Reading take their shiny new unbeaten winning run for a short trip down the road to play the first hooped/suburban/binary derby of the season which, as seems a fairly regular (and always surprising given the generally miserable performances of both teams in these games) occurrence, is live on Sky. And none of this silly red button nonsense either it’s properly live so you’ll get the replays in slow mo of all the goals scored (most probably) by the fakes together with enjoying the usual standard level of punditry from those in the not know.
Already rising magnificently up the table like a soaring Phoenix from the flames, Reading take to the road to challenge yet another high flying in form side in front of the Sky cameras. In addition, as it’s a Tuesday night game away from home, there is the additional challenge of trying to overturn the horrendous record of just 2 wins in the last 33 away league games played in midweek.
QPR under Mark Warburton are doing rather well (probably why Sky have opted to show the game) as they do not draw many games with only 1 draw in the 12 league games played to date. Since that early season point they’ve more or less gone from winning a couple to losing a couple and back again - and they’ve won their last two. They also favour, but do not restrict themselves, to playing 3 at the back and have a bit of height in there with 6’4” Grant Hall which will give a headache to Reading at set pieces (so Sky will have to pan back a bit to get him into shot).
An upside in this for Reading is that Rangers have so far failed to keep a clean sheet in any game this season but equally it does mean they are fairly effective going forward as they do currently sit 5th in the table. Of course with Sky covering the game that may mean goals dry up completely...
The fakes are more or less at full strength barring any knocks picked up at Hull (or a Sky camera going rogue on the night) while Reading will be without Joao and Boye through injury and Meite maybe a slight doubt after the Preston game. There also appears to be a bout of sickness going round the club that has seem Morrison and then Rinomhota suffering in the last week. Andy is expected to be available for the game but who knows whether others will be too unwell to play.
Obviously the side selected isn’t probably going to vary much from that that would have played has Gomes remained in charge but there did appear to be a little bit more of a direct approach against Preston and less of the slow passing play at the back. This can only help and will presumably mean the more the club are pressed by opponents then the less they will “piddle” about with the ball and invite trouble as they have done under previous management.
So with it being live on Sky and being played away from home in midweek it’s going to take quite sometime from the boys to buck the standard miserable Reading trend of a cr@p performance and defeat but then it’s only that latter outcome they need to turn around.
Jeremy Simpson makes the long trek down from Lancashire for this one
23 Feb 2019 > Reading 1-1 Rotherham United
22 Sep 2018 > Reading 3-0 Hull City
21 Apr 2018 > Sheffield Wednesday 3-0 Reading
14 Oct 2017 > Leeds United 0-1 Reading
31 Jan 2017 > Birmingham City 0-1 Reading
17 Dec 2016 > Blackburn Rovers 2-3 Reading
09 Sep 2016 > Reading 2-1 Ipswich Town (managed to book 9 players)
16 Apr 2016 > Leeds United 3-2 Reading
09 Jan 2016 > Huddersfield Town 2-2 Reading (FA Cup 3)
20 Oct 2015 > Rotherham United 1-1 Reading
QPR and Reading are regular opponents. Right back into Victorian times they’ve been knocking six bells out of each other with the only gap of any real note being when QPR caught a bout of ambition back in the late 60s which saw them disappear into loftier circulation for the best part of 3 decades. Luckily Reading had been successfully vaccinated against ambition at some point in the mid 1950s and so managed to avoid such pretensions until well into the 1990s.
Yet despite this and the ongoing protestations from both camps over who has the actual right to wear blue and white hoops this is another of those should be derby games that aren’t derby games.
So this is the 46th season and 91st time the two clubs have gone in search of Football League points. It’s therefore the 46th visit to the “Meccano bowl”, that hybrid of steel and wood that masquerades as a football stadium down in deepest, darkest Shepherd’s Bush.
As you’d probably expect the home side has had much the better of things with Reading managing only 11 victories compared to the 20 so far notched by the “fakes”. One minor achievement is in view though as the next league goal Reading score there will be their 50th. Reading are also on a run of only one win in the last 8 league trips to West London.
How to follow the game
- Get a ticket and travel to the game
- Listen to Radio 5 Live and/or a myriad of other radio stations for score flashes
- Ring/text a mate for updates
- Use an iFollow subscription
- BBC Radio Berkshire (FM : 104.4, 104.1 or 95.4 depending where you are in the area)
- Did I mention it’s live in Sky?