Match Report: 2010/2011 Season

8 January 2011: FA CUP ROUND 3
Reading: Long (41 mins).
West Brom: -
Half Time: 1-0.

Attendance: 13,005

Pos Team P Pts GD
7 Nottm F 23 37 +11
8 READING 25 37 +10
9 Millwall 25 36 +8
Reading: Federici, Mills, Harte, Pearce, Cummings, McAnuff, Leigertwood, Kebe, Karacan, Hunt (Robson-Kanu, 86), Long (Church, 75) Subs not used: Tabb,Howard,Ingimarsson,Antonio,McCarthy,
West Brom: Myhill, Cech, Jara, Zuiverloon, Hurst, Scharner (Olsson, 46(sent off 60)), Morrison, Brunt, Dorrans, Barnes (Thomas, 63), Miller (Bednar, 52) Subs not used: Fortune, Carson, Cox, Shorey,
Reading: -
West Brom: Dorrans, Olsson
Ref: Jonathan Moss (West Yorkshire)
Another clinical finish by Shane Long sent the Royals through to the Fourth Round of the F A Cup. Reading dominated the first half and took the lead five minutes before the interval. Reading's task was made easier when Olsson was sent off for a pair of clumsy fouls in quick succession on Shane Long early in the second half. Albion had neither the desire nor the cutting edge to trouble Reading's defence although the Royals did seem surprisingly edgy as full time approached in spite of the advantage of an extra man.

It might have been a different story had referee Moss given what appeared to be a penalty after six minutes when Harte's chronic lack of pace was exposed by Miller. Harte's challenge inside the box was from behind and it is hard to see how it could have been a fair tackle. However that was Albion's best opportunity of the entire game and Reading dominated the first half constantly putting Albion under pressure. Harte curled a free kick narrowly wide and Cummings and Kebe were tormenting the visitors defence on the right as was McAnuff on the left. Myhill pulled off a brilliant reflex save from a Hunt header on sixteen minutes prompting chants from the away fans about his status as 'Albion's number one' which must have made Carson, sitting on the bench, feel very uncomfortable. Albion were very physical and were lucky not to receive more yellow cards than the three they received in the second half. Kebe was fired up and taking players on, but also showing uncharacteristic determination to win the ball. One 50 - 50 challenge at full stretch was particularly impressive. The breakthrough came on forty minutes when Hunt timed his leap perfectly to flick the ball on to Long. In his current form it was no surprise to see him show superb touch, strength and pace to put himself in a scoring position before driving the ball across the goal inside the upright.

Reading started the second half in similar fashion and Olsson, on for Sharner at half time, clattered Long and was booked. Albion had good chances to level the scores but Morrison headed wide from close range and then hit the bar with a looping long range effort. Olsson showing a remarkable lack of discipline ended his brief appearance with a lunge at Long on the edge of the box. Albion had not looked particularly interested at any stage and it should have been easy for the Royals to finish them off but for some reason they became edgy and careless. Certainly good opportunities were wasted when breaking out of their own half with a numerical advantage. Poor passing and movement let them down when the time an space was there to carve Albion open. Long and Hunt went off and Reading seemed less able to hold on to ball in their opponents half with Robson-Kanu and Church up front. It did not matter in the end. Reading defended well as a unit and held on for a well deserved victory. It was good team performance again but Long and Cummings were outstanding. Reading fans can now dream of another Cup run and there will not be many teams that will fancy a trip to the Madstad.
John Wells

Well the Baggies were pretty dire, apart from Miller shooting wide early on and the chip from Morrison I can't recall any other chances they had the whole game. For a prem strength team they were dire. On the other hand we created a few decent chances and Long took his goal well. Cummings played pretty well and looked confident, considering Jerome Thomas had roasted him last year you'd have to say that was a class performance. We started well and were in control of the first half, and deserved to lead at half time. Olsen's two stupid challenges on Long within 15mins pretty well put an end to the game, we sat back and they huffed and puffed but created very little. A great win for the Royals, they looked comfortable all game and the win will keep their confidence up.

Decent performance today against a disinterested bunch of Throstles. McAnuff was excellent going forward, Kebe indifferent, Karacan and Leigertwood excellent, Leigertwood's best game for us so far I felt. Defensively sound apart from the first 10-15 where Miller latched onto two balls over the top and, quite frankly, should have done better with both of them. Critical man of the moment Harte was decent I felt, although isolated for one of their Miller chances, obviously roasted for pace and probably should have gone for an early bath, but apart from that was very good. Shaun Cummings, utter revelation. Exceedingly good down the right defensively, although I felt he should have moved to close down the man who hit the bar for them instead of standing off him by six yards. Shane Long, excellent, if only he could always play like that. When off form his confidence gets shot to pieces, his touch get shots to pieces, his movement gets shot to pieces, his shooting gets shot to pieces but when on form we have a completely different player. Looks like we played Derby at the right time!! Noel Hunt abysmal unfortunately, although unfortunate not to score with his header thanks to some fine goalkeeping by the perennially excellent Boaz Myhill.

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Shane Long struck just before half-time as Championship Reading stunned 10-man Premier League West Brom in the FA Cup. The Royals had early chances, with Baggies defender Marek Cech hacking clear and Long firing a chance over. But Long collected Noel Hunt's flick, outpaced Gianni Zuiverloon and steered in his seventh goal in six matches. After the break James Morrison headed a good chance wide for the Baggies, who had half-time substitute Jonas Olsson dismissed for two rapid yellow cards. Reading who beat the Baggies and Liverpool en route to the quarter-finals last season, were unbeaten in seven matches at home going into the match.

Albion were disappointing, though they were convinced they should have had a penalty when Ishmael Miller fell under Ian Harte's challenge. Miller twice went close on his first start of the season and Morrison hit the top of the crossbar. For the home side, Harte curled a free-kick narrowly wide, and after Jobi McAnuff created space on the left, Hunt sent in a powerful header from 10 yards that was brilliantly saved by Boaz Myhill, recalled in place of Scott Carson. Olsson was booked only moments after entering the fray, and when he lost control of the ball and then hauled down Long after the striker had dispossessed him, referee Jon Moss had no option but to produce the red card.

BBC Sport

Long bagged a brace to seal all three points for Reading and end their recent run of consecutive draws. The 23-year-old striker won and converted a 44th-minute spot kick at Pride Park to notch his fifth of the season and fourth from 12-yards. Rams midfielder Kris Commons looked to have earned his side a point when he headed past the impressive Adam Federici on the hour mark. However, Long popped up with a header just two minutes from time as he converted Jobi McAnuff's cross to stop Reading’s run of five draws in a row. Brian McDermott's unchanged side now find themselves in seventh place in the Championship table and are well placed as they come into their run of Christmas fixtures. Only a handful of loyal Royals made it to Derbyshire, battling through the snow, as many more turned around and abandoned any hope of trying to make the game.
Reading Post