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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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16 October 2021 Venue Select Car Leasing Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - Championship

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Match Previews

READING PREVIEW

15 October 2021

Everything you need to know about our clash with the Royals this weekend!

The Reds will be hoping to leave this two-week break in better spirits than which they entered it, having lost their last three Sky Bet Championship fixtures to drop into the relegation zone

It has been a very trying start to the 21/22 campaign, only amplified by those defeats against Blackpool, Nottingham Forest and Millwall. All three clubs were suffering similarly to Barnsley, but all three took maximum points against a Reds side looking bereft of both confidence and ideas. 

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So the October international break quite possibly arrived in good time for Head Coach, Markus Schopp and his staff as they looked to try and arrest the club's slide down the league table. 

Whilst it was hoped that the hiatus might have served the Reds well in terms of getting more bodies back in contention for a place in the starting XI, Schopp - when addressing the media yesterday ahead of this weekend's clash with Reading - admitted that there are still unlikely to be returns this week for any of Mads Andersen, Carlton Morris, Aapo Halme, Josh Benson or Obbi Oularé. 

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There are, even, doubts over other players who remain unnamed at this stage as Barnsley head to Berkshire looking for a first win there in some seven years. A side, who after a tricky start to the season have only improved in recent fixtures, with four wins from their last five matches, pitting them as one of the EFL's form teams. 

It's a second season in charge of the Royals for Veljko Paunović. The former Serbian international midfielder guided Reading to a 7th-place finish last term, just missing out on a play-off position. Much credit must go to the former Atlético Madrid man however, considering the off-field troubles endured over the summer at the newly rebranded Select Car Leasing Stadium.

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The Royals have fallen foul of EFL financial rules and it's a matter of when, not if they are given a points deduction this season. So whilst they've performed admirably on the pitch and with 16 points they sit - once again - just outside the top six, it's likely that any docking of points would see them drop into the bottom reaches alongside the Reds. 

When looking at the Reading squad, a number of names jump out at you. We've the former Barnsley players such as Andy Yiadom and Danny Drinkwater; proven quality in the likes of Scott Dann, Liam Moore and Junior Hoilett; the standout player though for the men in blue and white hoops has to be attacking midfielder John Swift. 

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The former Chelsea academy product is closing in on 200 appearances as a Royal and after injury problems hampered him last term he has come back with real vengeance this season. Seven goals in the Championship already, out of contract next summer, he's one of the stars of the division and will no doubt have a host of suitors in January. 

Reading have only been beaten on home soil just the once this season. That was a 3-2 defeat against Bristol City back in August. Last time out at this venue, the Royals edged out Middlesbrough 1-0 thanks to a second half Alan Halilović goal. 

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Our last three points in this fixture came - as we referred to earlier - when goals from Stephen Dawson, Reuben Noble-Lazarus and Dale Jennings helped us to a 3-1 victory in 2014. And it's 10 years since our last Saturday win away at Reading. Back in August of 2011, under Keith Hill, Barnsley kick-started that season with a first win, 2-1, where goalkeeper Luke Steele pulled off two separate saves from penalty kicks. 

It was a loss on our last trip to Berkshire, however. The Reds had both Michał Helik and Mads Andersen sent off and went down to a 2-0 defeat.

The referee for Saturday's game is Mr Andy Davies. The Hampshire-based official last took control of a Reds fixture in December of last year, the 2-0 defeat away at Swansea City. This will be his eighth Sky Bet Championship appearance of the season and he's yet to get out his red card.

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In terms of domestic streaming, a reminder that the EFL has returned to the position held pre-pandemic, where any games kicking off between 2.45pm and 5.15pm on Saturday afternoons are prohibited. 

However, supporters in the UK are able to buy audio passes via iFollow Barnsley. 

Our overseas fans can enjoy live streaming of the game, with a match pass priced at £10.

For further information on iFollow for this season, and how to activate seasonal subscriptions, please click the link below. 

iFollow

 

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Match Reports

REDS BEATEN BY ROYALS

16 October 2021

A second half John Swift strike was enough to consign the Reds to defeat in Berkshire on Saturday afternoon.

One of the division's in-form midfielders, Swift’s second half opener was all that separated the two sides, with each team having good spells throughout the encounter, but the home side left the Select Car Leasing Stadium with maximum points this afternoon.

The opening stages of the game were even, with both sides having joy out wide. First of all, former Reds defender Andy Yiadom found space for a cross, but the ball didn’t find a shirt in blue and white and was cleared by the Reds.

Shortly after, in the eighth minute, neat play by Callum Brittain and Victor Adeboyejo on the right-hand side won the Reds their own corner. A well-worked routine found Brittain on the edge of the box, but his shot was blocked.

More good work from Yiadom on the Royals flank won the home side a corner, but the Barnsley defence held strong and cleared. 

Markus Schopp's side grew into the half and were the dominant side for large spells, playing some wonderful first-time football, without necessarily gaining their reward. 

Tenacious in midfield, Claudio Gomes won possession back for the Reds in the centre of the park on 23 minutes, driving at the Royals defence, however the Frenchman’s shot was held well by ‘keeper Luke Southwood.

In the 27th minute Reading had the ball in the back of the net, but thankfully for the Reds the linesman raised his flag as Tom Dele-Bashiru was adjudged to be offside.

The disallowed goal provided a lift for the home crowd, and Reading began to enjoy increased possession of the ball. But they didn't threaten, as the Reds continued to look more likely in their own forages forward.

Cauley Woodrow won a free-kick for Barnsley after some good work on the edge of the area. His resulting free-kick went under the Reading wall and required some good work by Southwood to save the effort low to his left.

Reading had the chance to muster up one more attempt before the break, with Scott Dann heading powerfully from a Royals corner, but a smart stop from Collins prevented Veljko Paunovic’s side going into the break with a lead.

HALF-TIME: Reading 0-0 Barnsley

The Reds were quick off the blocks in the second half and controlled possession in the opening exchanges.

Aaron Leya-Iseka found himself on the left-hand side and had opportunity to cross the ball. His delivery was too high for Woodrow, but found Brittain at the back stick. On the volley, the wing-back rifled an effort on goal from close range, but unfortunately for the Reds the ball cannoned off the post.

The visitors continued with their bright start, with Woodrow and Adeboyejo linking up well to create a chance for the latter, but Southwood was equal to it, saving well at his near post.

Both managers turned to their benches shortly after the hour-mark. George Puscas was replaced by Femi Azeez, and Markus Schopp introduced Clarke Oduor, the Kenyan international replacing the ever-willing Leya Iseka.

Shortly after his introduction, Azeez found himself through on goal after a slide-rule pass split the Reds defence. However, a great recovering block from Michał Helik prevented an almost guaranteed goal for the Royals.

Reading were beginning to turn the screw, as Collins pulled off an incredible stop from Baba Rahman’s 25-yard effort, which took a nick off Toby Sibbick, making the fingertip save even more impressive.

There was an appearance for Will Hondermarck who replaced the injured Romal Palmer, but the Reds couldn’t regain any dominance.

The home side’s pressure finally paid off on 77 minutes as Swift found a way through on the left flank before rounding Collins and slamming in from six-yards.

In response, Devante Cole was introduced to the action to replace Brittain as the Reds pushed for an equaliser, winning several corners, but the Royals defence held strong. 

In the final minutes of the game, Woodrow found himself with space on the right-hand side and delivered a teasing aerial cross, which came agonisingly close to being met by Cole only for Southwood to claim.

The fourth official raised his board signifying there were to be three additional minutes, but no matter how hard the Reds tried to break down the Royals defence, the home side remained resolute and saw out the one-goal lead.

FULL-TIME: Reading 1-0 Barnsley

Collins, Moon, Helik, Sibbick, Brittain (Cole, 83), J Williams, Palmer (Hondermarck, 73), Gomes, Leya Iseka (Oduor, 67), Adeboyejo, Woodrow.

Unused: Walton, B Williams, Vita, Frieser

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