Royals' search for first win continues
10th November 2012
Reading were once again ruing another Premier League game without a win, after they endured a stalemate with Norwich at the Madejski Stadium.
Chris Hughton's side settled into the game better in the early stages, while similarly to their opponents, failed to create any clear-cut openings. Reading were however the first side to test the opposition keeper, as Garath McCleary's drove a 25-yard effort at John Ruddy, but the England international did enough to palm the ball away from danger.
Norwich's only effort worth of noting in the opening changes was a wayward effort from midfielder Bradley Johnson, who got his bearings all wrong. The Royals upped the tempo as the game progressed and forced many set pieces from the Canaries, but could not capitalise. Defender Sean Morrison almost profited from one of Shorey's deliveries.
Both teams were being subjected to long range efforts, with captain Jobi McAnuff and Steven Whittaker attempting to their to no avail. McDermott would have told his side to up their game in the second period if they wanted to earn their first win of the season and it appeared his players got this message in the opening minutes.
The home side made a fluttering start to the second half, with the likes of Shorey and McCleary trying to feed the Royals attack with some crosses into the area. Federici was a spectator for the majority of the first period, but would have been given a scare by Wes Hoolahan, as the Irishman just fired his effort wide from the edge of the box.
The introduction of Jimmy Kebe appeared to give Reading a lift and looked as if they were more likely to create an opening in this uninspiring encounter. It was also the Malian who came closest to winning the game for his side, as his original cross managed to bounce off Ruddy's crossbar and was eventually cleared away from danger.
Royals captain Jobi McAnuff had a mini-surge of his own, driving inside past two Canaries defenders, before striking an effort just over Ruddy's bar. Norwich did however show some fight themselves, with Anthony Pilkington looking increasingly dangerous on the visitors flank, firing numerous crosses in for the reasonably-quiet Holt.
The game finished a draw and many would argue that a share of the points was a fair result. Reading had the majority of the ball, but could not create enough with it, along with solid organisation from Chris Hughton's side. As much as his attitude has come into question, I believe Danny Guthrie can still give that creative spark to us that we we're calling out for this game.