For the final time in the strangest year of modern times, we take to the field at Madejski Stadium on Boxing Day when we host Luton Town.
It’s been a tough year for our fans, who have missed out on the majority of the action in RG2 – including some fantastic wins this season as we continue to mix it up in the upper reaches of the Championship.
And after being back for our three most recent games, it feels tough to have that snatched away from us again and for games to go back behind closed doors… but your health and safety is more important than anything else.
Meanwhile, on the pitch, we’ll be aiming to do the business against the Hatters come 3pm on Boxing Day.
There’s no TV coverage of our Boxing Day encounter against Luton, so the only place to watch it is on iFollow.
Royals supporters based in the UK can get an iFollow Video Match Pass for £10, while overseas fans get a pass for the equivalent of £7 in your local currency – there’s also now a ‘half season ticket’ package available for overseas supporters. There is also the option of getting audio commentary only, as well as packages available for international fans.
Make sure you also get hold of the new EFL iFollow app if you want to watch on your iOS or Android device.
Get your iFollow Match Pass (or view other games available) by clicking here.
It’s the second time that Nathan Jones’ side have come to RG2 this season; the first was in September in the Carabao Cup.
And Boxing Day has a bit of recent significance for the Hatters… their 3-3 home draw with Fulham a year ago, in which a stoppage-time goal denied them the win, was when they dropped into the bottom three. And that’s where they stayed until the final day of the season when they pulled off a 3-2 win against Blackburn to avoid the drop, against the odds!
Their survival last year has rolled over into a steady start this season – they’re as close to the automatic promotion places as they are to the relegation zone, with 20 games gone. That is owed in part to a 3-0 win at Kenilworth Road against Preston a fortnight ago, and a surprise 3-1 triumph against front-runners Norwich City at the start of the month.
Matthew Donohue will be on duty as referee for this game; a second visit to Madejski Stadium so far this season. The first was in October when we met Rotherham and won 3-0, thanks to a Yakou Meite brace and a sole goal by Lucas Joao.
Notably, the official has brandished red cards on four occasions in his nine Championship fixtures so far - including in each of the last three games.
Rob Smith and Steven Meredith are our linesman for the game, while James Linington is the fourth official.
A polite reminder to all of our supporters that no unauthorised access at all will be permitted to this game, so supporters must not travel to Madejski Stadium.
We can’t wait to see you all again soon – but for now it’s important that when we play, please stay away.