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19:08 21st November 2009

Report: Rasiak wins it for Royals

Reading 2 (Sigurdsson 52, Rasiak 83)
Blackpool 1 (Ormerod 58)

Grzegorz Rasiak put the Royals Madejski Stadium hoodoo to the sword on Saturday afternoon, as Brendan Rodgers' side picked up a dramatic home victory over Blackpool.

Gylfi Sigurdsson scored his third goal in a week to open the scoring early in the second half after good work from Jobi McAnuff, but as Brett Ormerod finished off a neat team move for the visitors it looked as though it was to be another frustrating afternoon in Berkshire for Reading.

However substitute Rasiak lifted the roof off the Mad Stad with just seven minutes remaining, sending home Marek Matejovsky's cross to give his side their second win in three games.

Reading (4-3-3): Federici, Bertrand, Tabb, Ingimarsson, Pearce, Sigurdsson (Karacan 71), Howard, Matejovsky, McAnuff, Kebe (Robson-Kanu HT), Church (Rasiak 68)
Subs: Cisse, Mills, Gunnarsson, Karacan, Hamer, Rasiak
Yellow: Matejovsky

Blackpool: Gilks, Crainey (Martin HT), Baptiste, Evatt, Seip, Adam, Southern (Clarke 65), Euell, Vaughan, Ormerod, Burgess
Subs: Rachubka, Eardley, Clarke, Taylor-Fletcher (Ormerod 84), Martin, Bangura, Edwards
Yellow: Adam, Crainey, Martin

Attendance: 15,945 (1,116)

First Half
Jobi McAnuff was voted the Royals player of the month for October and quickly set to staking a hefty claim for the November prize, twisting and turning on the left wing before seeing a curling effort tipped wide by Matt Gilks with barely a minute on the clock.

Four minutes later Jobi once again had the beating of Tangerines right back Alex Baptiste - this time driving to the byline before seeing a low cross deflected away from danger as the home side came out all guns blazing from the off.

Simon Church was another hooped star buzzing off the back of recent form, a first senior goal for Wales saw to that, and he almost had his second at the Madejski Stadium as he turned a Gylfi Sigurdsson corner onto the post moments later.

The momentum once again shifted to the left hand side 12 minutes in as the relentless McAnuff outpaced Baptiste before lofting a tantalising cross to the far post, where Jimmy Kebe rifled a volley towards goal that was well blocked by Gilks.

It really was one way traffic as an incisive Sigurdsson pass unleashed Kebe on the right hand side of the area, only for the Malian's cutback to be dragged narrowly wide as Gylfi attempted to finish the move he started.

Kebe was involved again in the same area as he flew past Stephen Crainey before clipping a ball into the 18-yard-box, where Church's clever flicked header dropped just wide of goal.

Blackpool's first effort didn't come until 25 minutes into the opening period, as good work from Jason Euell fed Ben Burgess on the edge of the box, though his weak effort was easily tipped away by Adam Federici.

Simon Church pulled another effort wide of the post ten minutes before the break after beating the offside trap from McAnuff's flick on, though Brendan Rodgers' side were failing to make the same inroads as they had in the opening stages.

In fact it was the Seasiders who could have taken a lead into the break, as Ben Burgess pounced on a loose ball in the box, only to see his drilled effort come back off the inside of the post.

Reading did rally in the dying seconds of the period as Church's flick put Sigurdsson through on goal, but the Icelandic U21 international was crowded out and saw his tame effort stopped by Gilks.

Seconds later Simon Church had a strong penalty shout turned down by referee Mr G Scott as he was bundled over in the area by Marcel Seip, as the Royals were forced to head in even at half time.

Second Half
The Madejski home support had cause for concern as the second period got underway, as the Tangerines came out with their tails up and took the game to the Royals.

Ben Burgess had an effort cleared off the line as roles were reversed from the previous half, but that was all set to change as a swift counter-attack gave the home side the lead.

Unsurprisingly Jobi McAnuff was at the forefront of things, once more putting on the afterburners to leave Baptiste in his wake before clipping a ball back across the 18-yard box. It missed the on-rushing Simon Church but fell perfectly at the feet of Gylfi Sigurdsson - who kept his cool with a neat first touch before stroking the ball home.

The lead would barely last five minutes, as a resurgent Pool side levelled things up thanks to veteran forward Brett Ormerod. The former Southampton striker rounded off a neat passing move by clinically cracking the ball past Federici, to the delight of a 1,000 strong travelling support.

The Tangerines almost hit the net again, this time at the wrong end of the pitch, though 'keeper Matt Gilks was once again on hand to palm away a miss-placed defensive header 62 minutes in.

Shortly afterwards the Royals showed their ability to demonstrate swift passing football, with Robson-Kanu, Howard and Sigurdsson all involved before McAnuff drove the ball straight at the Pool keeper.

Substitute Robson-Kanu fired just over the top as the game entered its last ten minutes, whilst at the other end a heart-stopping goalmouth scramble resulted in Ben Burgess whipping a dipping strike just over the station.

The Royals' luck was in on that occasion and they had even more to shout about after 83 minutes, as Grzegorz Rasiak scored the goal that would end Reading's disastrous Madejski Stadium hoodoo.

Marek Matejovsky's cross from the left wing was virtually impossible to defend, and the Polish international drifted in at the far post to head home in trademark fashion.

The relief was tangible as the net bulged, though tension built up once more as the loyal Royal army waited with baited breath for the final whistle.

Another furious mix up in the Reading penalty area almost threatened to undo all the hard work with a minute remaining, and as five minutes added time were revealed by the forth official most of the ground were watching with heads in hands.

Centre half Ian Evatt wasted two golden opportunities in the dying stages as rain lashed down in a dramatic finale, but the day was destined to belong to Readingas the final whistle signalled an end to the game, an end to the unwanted run and three points for Brendan Rodgers.

    Data provided by Press Association