Reading – the team
Reading took the “appoint former big name Premier League player with no managerial experience in England” approach in the summer when handing the job to Jaap Stam. Unlike the total cock up that was Sami Hyypia’s reign as Albion boss, this has paid off handsomely with the Biscuitment launching an unlikely promotion bid. They currently sit fourth in the table, eight points behind us but having played one game more. If they are to secure a third promotion to the Premier League via automatic means rather than the lottery of the play offs, then this looks like a must win game for them.
Reading – the place
Reading is the largest settlement in the United Kingdom without city status which is a fact that will surely aid you in a pub quiz at some point. It is famous for its brewing trade which is quite ironic as on most of our visits there the pubs have tended to be crap. The Reading Festival is the second largest music festival of its kind in the country after Glastonbury which is great news for fans of music of illegal substances.
Reading – the people
Surprisingly, Reading is somewhat of a literature and intellectual behometh. Jane Austen went to school there, Oscar Wilde was imprissoned there and Jeremy Kyle grew up there. Sir John Madjeski made his fortune in Reading, largely thanks to the Auto Trader magazine and is of course not one egotistical bastard at all having named the Biscuitments home ground the Madjeski Stadium.
A good WeAreBrighton.com memory of Reading at home
It’s not just a recent development that has seen Alan Pardew become a bit of pratt. He was one as long ago as 2002 when he bought his Reading side to Withdean to face Peter Taylor’s Albion in a pivotal game at the top of the third tier. The Albion ended up winning 3-1 on a Monday night thanks to goals from Bobby Zamora, Junior Lewis and Steve Melton. They would go onto win the title ahead of Reading that season which led to an entertaining meltdown from Pardew who claimed his side were easily the best in the division. We’ll just ignore the SIX points we won the league by as well, Alan.
A bad WeAreBrighton.com memory of Reading at home
The following season was pretty depressing as Pardew had his revenge of sorts, winning 1-0 through John Salako in a game that was a terrible advert for football.
Reading will have a former Albion goalkeeper between the sticks in the shape of Ali al-Habsi. The hapless Hyypia made a lot of ridiculous loan signings but al-Habsi has to be the biggest of the lot, playing just once away at AFC Bournemouth. He missed the next game through Hyypia having too many loan players in the matchday squad and then buggered off to some international tournament with Oman. Lewis Grabban’s name may also ring a bell, the Bournemouth striker who used the Albion’s interest in him in the January 2014 transfer window to negotiate a vastly improved contract at Dean Court. With us ending up with David Rodriguez as a result.
Yann Kermogant is a bloody big danger to opposition players if that horror tackle he produced on Liam Rosenior at the Madjeski back in August is anything to go by. Rosenior had to undergo surgery on his ankle ligaments as a result and hasn’t played for the first team since. Reading supporters showed real class that day by booing him off the pitch.
Our games on Sky this season have a ridiculous record for producing cards – and not all of them from Lewis Dunk. There have been reds shown in the live games against Huddersfield, Sheffield Wednesday – three of them – Queens Park Rangers and Newcastle United off the top of our heads. Over 55 booking points is available at 15/8 with SkyBet.
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