Royals and Palace fight out stalemate
29th October 2011
Attendance: 21,002 (1321 away)
Reading were denied an injury time winner at Crystal Palace after referee Andy Woolmer controversially ruled out Kaspars Gorkss header, meaning the game finished 0-0 between the two sides at Selhurst Park on Saturday afternoon.
Brian McDermott named an unchanged line-up from the team that drew with league leaders Southampton last week in a line-up which included former Eagles players Mikele Leigertwood and Jobi McAnuff, while former Reading target Anthony Gardner lined up for Palace.
It was very high tempo start to the game from both teams, with Jem Karacan having a low shot easily kept out by Palace goalkeeper Julian Speroni in the opening minutes of the game. Sean Scannell then had some space down the left-hand side but was thwarted by defender Alex Pearce.
The Royals came closest 10 minutes into the game from an unlikely source, as Kaspars Gorkss struck a fine effort from 30-yards, which could have had Speroni troubled but the Argentinian was equal to his shot.
Both teams showed why they were several games unbeaten coming into this game, with some slick passing movement on show. Youngster Wilfred Saha is highly rated at Selhurst Park and almost gave his team the lead, as he left Karacan for dead but his drive was just wide of Federici`s post.
Speroni was then bought into the action again as the ball came to Turkey U21 international Karacan on the edge of the box and hit this effort with a lot more conviction than his previous one, forcing the Eagles keeper to tip it over his bar.
The home side then had the ball in the net but the linesman rightly ruled it out for offside. Reading then went up the other end of the pitch, with striker Adam Le Fondre having a 25-yard effort deflected away for a corner just before half-time.
Once again Reading went in at half-time failing to score a first half goal on the 14th occasion. However, after the break the visitors were close to breaking the deadlock as good play down the right allowed captain McAnuff to cross for Hal Robson-Kanu who under no pressure, managed to head wide.
The game continued to be end-to-end with both teams going for the potential winner. Adam Federici was called into for the first time in the game as Palace skipper Paddy McCarthy leapt to meet the ball but Federici did well to palm it over the bar.
The home side`s arial dominance was becoming a problem for the Royals in attack and especially defence, as Gardner had a goal-bound header cleared off the line by Karacan. The Eagles fans then wanted a penalty as Federici went in with Parr but the Australian seemed to get a touch on the ball.
Into the fourth minute of injury time came the game`s deciding moment as a Joseph Mills corner was headed in by Kaspars Gorkss which would have surely given the Royals the points but Andy Woolmer controversially decided to rule it out, when replays suggested otherwise.
The game finished 0-0 with Reading fans and players livid that Gorkss` goal wasn`t allowed to stand, when TV replays show their wasn`t much wrong with the goal, denying Brian McDermott`s men three crucial points.
Crystal Palace: Speroni, Clyne, McCarthy, Gardner, Wright, Zaha, Moxey, Jedinak, Scannell, Williams, Murray
ubs: Price, Parr, Ambrose, Dikgacoi, Easter
Reading: Federici, Cummings, Pearce, Gorkss, Mills, McAnuff, Leigertwood, Karacan, Robson-Kanu, Church, Le Fondre
ubs: McCarthy, Harte, Kebe, Hunt, Manset