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Royals struggle in front of goal again

Bristol City
0 - 1
Reading

Ashton Gate

20th October 2010

Attendance: 13,519

Referee:

The Royals were left frustrated after a 1-0 defeat to Bristol City on Tuesday evening, as we yet again lacked conviction in front of goal. Sub Simon Church missed a free header late in the game, whilst David James made a superb save from Noel Hunt who was starting his first game in over a year.

There was just one change from the side that lost to Swansea which saw Noel Hunt start in place of Hal Robson Kanu, which saw a return to a 4-4-2 formation with an all Irish front 2. We started well and Shane Long showed good pace early on but lacked the composure when he got into the area and his chip went well wide.

The game was end to end but it was the home side who looked the most dangerous and Ian Harte was having a torrid time up against Albert Adomah, who was beating him for pace every time he got the ball. He created a chance for Jon Stead who turned on the edge of the box and smashed the cross bar with Adam Federici beaten.

It was no surprise when City took the lead and it was the pace of Adomah that caused all the problems. His cross from the right saw Stead try an audacious overhead kick but Matt Mills outmuscled him and was clearly fouled, but the free kick was not given. The ball fell kindly to Danny Haines who drove the ball home.

We played better in the second half and the introduction of Brian Howard for Harte gave us more of a drive going forward and we created a number of half chances that we couldn`t convert.

Hunt had a header superbly saved from David James who defied his years to acrobatically tip the ball away and then somehow managed to stop it going out for a corner. The best chance of the game, as on Saturday, fell to sub Simon Church but his free header from 6 yards out was straight at the keeper.

It was another disappointing game and one which we could have taken something from if we had someone who could put the ball into the back of the net. Brian McDermott must surely dip into the loan market for a striker, as we cannot go on missing chances like we have been. You only have to look at the Bristol City team, Haynes and Stead were superb upfront and then they had Brett Pitman on the bench with the likes of Nicky Maynard and Sam Vokes not currently available. We need that strength in depth or we will struggle to achieve anything other than mid table.



Star Player

Hardly a star player but Adam Federici made a couple of good stops in the first half as City dominated. No one else really stood out, apart from maybe Hunt who was lively and Armstrong who did a good job in the middle and at left back.


Writer:Steve Guscott
Date:Wednesday October 20 2010
Time: 10:39AM

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League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Burnley 46 26 15 5 93 37
P Middlesbrough 46 26 11 9 89 32
3 Brighton 46 24 17 5 89 30
4 Hull City 46 24 11 11 83 34
5 Derby County 46 21 15 10 78 23
6 Sheff Wed 46 19 17 10 74 21
7 Ipswich 46 18 15 13 69 2
8 Cardiff 46 17 17 12 68 5
9 Brentford 46 19 8 19 65 5
10 Birmingham 46 16 15 15 63 4
11 Preston 46 15 17 14 62 0
12 Q.P.R. 46 14 18 14 60 0
13 Leeds Utd 46 14 17 15 59 -8
14 Wolves 46 14 16 16 58 -5
15 Blackburn 46 13 16 17 55 0
16 Forest 46 13 16 17 55 -4
17 Reading 46 13 13 20 52 -7
18 Bristol City 46 13 13 20 52 -17
19 Huddersfield 46 13 12 21 51 -11
20 Fulham 46 12 15 19 51 -13
21 Rotherham 46 13 10 23 49 -18
R Charlton 46 9 13 24 40 -40
R MK Dons 46 9 12 25 39 -30
R Bolton 46 5 15 26 30 -40
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