Looking at the home side, what have Reading done at home so far? Back in August they enjoyed their first ever game in the Premiership, beating Middlesbro 3-2 coming from 2 goals down. What a shame we couldn't have started with so easy a game! Next they beat Man. City 1-0 ( who doesn't) , then a well-earned draw against Manure 1-1 (!), two defeats against Chelski 0-1 and the Arse 0-4 (thats more like it), and then another win, over Spurs 3-1. I expect they'll be rubbing their hands at the thought of playing Charlton next.
Away wins have also come at West Ham 1-0 and Sheff. Utd 2-1. So 5 victories to date but its not been all plain sailing. The Spurs victory came after a run of 5 succesive defeats if you include the League Cup loss to Liverpool and after only 1 goal in the 4 Premiership games. The defence has let them down too, conceding 18 goals, the most in the Premiership ( along with us of course), and they have kept just one clean sheet in the last eight games.
Its been over 25 years since we got a win at Reading although we've only been there 4 times since then, with 2 draws and 2 defeats.
The complete record reads: Reading 11 wins, Charlton 9, Draws 8
with the record at Reading being: Reading 7 wins, Charlton 2, Draws 5
Talk the Talk
Kevin Doyle is Reading's top scorer with five goals and he it was that scored his first ever goal for his country and Irelands 2nd goal against San Marino on Wednesday, so he'll be full of confidence. Andy Reid, of course, scored the first goal in Dublin. Diawara's familarity with one of last weeks scorers, Camara, failed to help the Addicks so lets hope that this week Andy Reid's knowledge goes a bit deeper.
There's reports, however, that both Diawara and Kish are suffering from hamstring problems so it could see a return for Fortune.
There's no Faye, due to his fifth booking of the season and although Rommedahl is said to be back in training but I can't see 2 wingers being used in such an important game. It looks odds on a 4-5-1 formation, with the midfield being Reid, Thomas and three others. Hughsey and Holland will probably be two of them and then we'll find out Reeds' preferences. If only Walton were back, it could be the chance the try him out, but as it is it'll mean a toss-up between Kish ( if fit), Ambrose or maybe Pouso. Maybe he'll surprise us with a Marcus Bent out wide but I can't see a place for Hasselbaink.
Darren, and hopefully his hamstring has recovered sufficently, will almost certainly be up front on his own.
The deadly Lawrenson predicts no more surprises this week and sees a 2-0 home win and I can't see any improvement on a difficult week either, Reading 3 Charlton 1