Swans' comeback denies Royals victory
6th October 2012
Reading are still looking for their first win in the Premier League this campaign, after losing a two-goal advantage against Swansea at the Liberty Stadium this afternoon.
Reading boss Brian McDermott made once enforced change to his line-up that drew with Newcastle last Saturday, with Jay Tabb making his first Premier League appearance for the injured Mikele Leigertwood. His opposite number Michael Laudrup also made one change to his starting XI, with Wayne Routledge coming in for summer signing Pablo Hernandez.
The Swans had the first, real chance of the afternoon, as a free-kick met the head of defender Ashley Williams, but the newly-appointed Welsh captain could not direct his header towards goal. Michael Laudrup's side continued this pressure and forced Alex McCarthy into action, as Wayne Routledge's cross was met well by Danny Graham, but the England U21 international tipped over well.
Reading struggled to form any notable attack in the opening exchanges, as McCarthy was once again called upon as he parried a rather weak effort from Routledge in the box. Despite this exerting pressure from the home side, rather extraordinarily, Brian McDermott's men took the lead at the Liberty Stadium with their first meaningful shot on goal.
With the first notable venture into Swansea's final third, the ball was fed into Pavel Pogrebnyak's feet and took his right-footed shot first time and somewhat deceived Michel Vorm, who let the shot squirm under his body to give Reading the lead against the run of play. The Liberty Stadium was in a state of shock.
Swansea attempted a quick response with Ki's long-range effort, but went comfortably into the safe hands of McCarthy. Instead of further pressure, it got even worse for the home side as Reading doubled their lead at the Liberty. Captain Jobi McAnuff's shot was deflected and looped awkwardly in the air, but striker Noel Hunt struck a sublimely-timed volley to give the Royals a great, yet undeserved lead.
The home side started the second period in a similar vein to the first half and had a superb chance to reduce the deficit in the opening minutes. Substitute Luke Moore was put clean through following a neat pass from Michu, but Alex McCarthy smothered his effort well to maintain a two-goal margin in the favour of Brian McDermott's side.
McCarthy had made a number of good saves in the match, but he was to become the star of the show. Once again the 22-year old made another superb save, as he tipped Luke Moore's goal bound header onto the post.
The Swans were coming ever so closer and Alex McCarthy was on hand again to deny the Welsh side, tipping a deflected Ki effort onto the post and save the Royals blushes again. Ashley Williams was next in line to test the reactions of the keeper and young McCarthy was to come out on top again, as he clawed out the Welshman's header at the far post.
Reading's resilience was finally broken soon after, as Michu scored an equaliser for the hosts. Wayne Routledge's cross was deflected kindly into the Spaniard at the back post, who nodded home to make it game on at the Liberty Stadium.
Despite finally beating a superb McCarthy, the academy graduate was not to be undone. Luke Moore hooked a right-footed effort towards goal, but albeit awkwardly, the keeper palmed it away well enough. However, the Swans did eventually bite back with ten minutes go. Neat play between Michu and Routledge, set up the former QPR man to fire in the equaliser.
Michael Laudrup's side then had a shout for a penalty, as Pablo Hernandez's effort was adjudged to have been deflected away by Nicky Shorey's hand, but referee Mike Dean dismissed these claims. Reading then came within inches of stealing the game in the 90th minute, as Jem Karacan's header was cleared off the line by Swans captain Ashley Williams.
It was the visitors who were making the final strides in injury time and Jimmy Kebe's low cross was not taken advantage of by the Royals front line. Robson-Kanu and Gorkss also had late efforts, but neither could prevent the scoreline finishing level. It would be disappointing from a Reading perspective to lose a two goal advantage, but a good point none the less.
Swansea: Vorm, Rangel, Flores, Williams (c), Davies, Britton, Ki, Michu, Routledge, Dyer, Graham
Subs: Tremmel, Tate, Tiendalli, De Guzman, Hernandez, Shechter, Moore
Reading: McCarthy, Cummings, Mariappa, Gorkss, Shorey, Kebe, Tabb, Karacan, McAnuff (c), Hunt, Pogrebnyak
Subs: Taylor, Pearce, Guthrie, McCleary, Robson-Kanu, Roberts, Le Fondre