Royals defeated by second half double
Saturday 25th January 2014
Two second goals from Ipswich was enough to give them victory over a Reading side, who couldn`t build on their previous victories against Bolton and Watford.
Nigel Adkins urged consistency from his side after two consecutive wins and the manager matched this by naming an unchanged side for the third game in a row. Bright starts have been a new feature in recent games for us and we nearly followed in that fashion again, as from kick off le Fondre gave the ball to McCleary in space, who drove forward, yet shot wide of goal.
Stephen Hunt was starting for Ipswich against his former side and had his team`s best chance of the opening exchanges, as a header at the back post was headed back into the middle, but the winger couldn`t connect well enough with the volley. Reading then had a stonewall penalty turned down, as McAnuff was impeded in the area, but the referee saw otherwise.
Reading were shading the match in terms of attacking intent, but after a lively start, the game died down. David McGoldrick has the first shot on target of the game, but was very comfortable for McCarthy. Just before the break, Reading had a good spell of pressure as Pogrebnyak had a shot blocked and Danny Williams` long range effort forced a superb fingertip save from Dean Gerken.
Ipswich started the second period the much better, after a rather dire first half from the home side. McCarthy had to make a superb save to deny a McGoldrick header after a scramble in the Royals area, but the keeper managed to gather, despite a dangerous challenge coming in from Hunt. Mick McCarthy`s side were growing in confidence, as Reading were looking quite flat this half.
The home side eventually broke the deadlock in the game and they probably deserved since the interval. Hunt broke away on the left side and squared for Daryl Murphy to superbly finish, with his effort going in off the crossbar. McGoldrick then had a fantastic chance to double the lead, being put clear through, but McCarthy did very well to deny the in-form forward.
Reading started to show more urgency in the last twenty minutes, as Reading were within inches of equalising, as Obita`s dangerous ball across the goal somehow missed everyone, when all it needed was a touch. Substitute Nick Blackman then had a good chance to equalise for Reading, as his initial shot was blocked but fired his rebound well over the bar.
Adkins` side were applying pressure, but were struggling to test Gerken in the Ipswich goal. Instead, the hosts doubled their lead as they sealed the three points just before the 90 minute mark. Ipswich substitute Paul Anderson dropped his shoulder to side step Obita, before beating McCarthy at this near post, which would have disappointed the young keeper.
Danny Williams had an effort tipped wide, which would have only been a consolation for Reading. I suppose you could argue that it was a game of two halves - Reading had the better of the first period despite not having any clear cut opportunities, yet Ipswich were much improved in the second period and deserved their win. Now, we move to Tuesday to put it right against Blackpool.
Ipswich - 4-4-2: Gerken, Chambers, Smith, Berra, Cresswell, Edwards, Skuse, Tunnicliffe, Hunt, Murphy, McGoldrick
Subs: Loach, Anderson, Wordsworth, Mings, Tabb, Taylor, Nouble
Reading - 4-4-2: McCarthy, Gunter, Pearce, Gorkss, Obita, McCleary, Williams, Akpan, McAnuff, Pogrebnyak, Le Fondre
Subs: Federici, Hector, Kelly, Cummings, J.Taylor, Drenthe, Blackman