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Kick off 19:45 (UK)

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23 February 2021 Venue Adams Park Attendance

Kick off 19:45 (UK)

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English Football League - Championship

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Match Previews

🔜 Ahead of the game | Midweek visit to Adams Park beckons for Royals

Wycombe Wanderers the latest team standing between us and three points

23 February 2021

Presented with an immediate opportunity to put the disappointment of Saturday's defeat to Middlesbrough behind them, the Royals travel to Adams Park to take on Wycombe Wanderers in a Bucks-Berks showdown at Adams Park.

Tonight's hosts may sit at the foot of the table, but the standings will mean nothing when the teams cross the white line this evening, and Wycombe themselves have continued to pick up points despite being 11 points adrift of safety.

Victory for Veljko Paunović's men could see them re-establish themselves at eight points inside the top six, with 14 games to play. While Gareth Ainsworth's side will be hoping tonight is the night they begin their push for survival, despite suffering defeat to Reading earlier in the season.

How to watch

Tonight's meeting with the Wanderers is available for supporters to watch via iFollow.

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Royals supporters can grab their Match Pass to watch proceedings unfold, by clicking here ahead of our 7:45pm kick-off in Wycombe.

The opposition

Wycombe, and their rock and roll boss, Gareth Ainsworth have endured a tough first season in the second tier, but that has not dampened their spirits as they continue to fight against relegation with 15 games left to play, and plenty of points still at stake.

Within their squad, Wycombe also have three former Royals on their books, Jamaican midfielder Garath McCleary who registered 270 Reading appearances in eight years, defender Jordan Obita who in his 10 years at the Madejski, made over 190 appearances and Uche Ikpeazu who was once part of the Reading academy.

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The Wanderers have won just once in their last eight league outings, but last time out earnt a point during a 0-0 against a mid-table Millwall side. Wycombe's last win came earlier this month, as they staged a stunning comeback to record a 3-2 victory away at Huddersfield Town. Goals from Anis Mehmeti, Joe Jacobson and a late penalty from Josh Knight capped an afternoon to remember for tonight's hosts.

During the January transfer window, Ainsworth not only extended Knight's loan, but completed the signing of Jordan Obita from Oxford United, the resigning of AFC Bournemouth midfielder Nnamdi Ofoborh on loan, and the loan signing of Leicester City striker Admiral Muskwe.

One to watch: Uche Ikpeazu

A boistrous, powerful striker who began his career in the Royals academy, Ikpeazu is now at his 11th club and has so far enjoyed a positive start to life as a Wanderer. The Ugandan forward has three goals in 15 Wycombe appearances to date, and most recently found the net in a 2-1 defeat to Derby County.

The athletic 6ft3in front man who claims his biggest strenght is his strenght, arrived at Adams Park in August 2020 following a two-year stay in Edinburgh with Hearts. During his time in the Scottish capital, Ikpeazu scored 10 goals in 55 appearances for the Jam Tarts. 

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Previous to his move to Scotland, Ikpeazu had enjoyed the best spell of his career with League Two side Cambridge United, with whom he also spent two years having joined the U's in 2016. While at the Abbey Stadium, he found the net 22 times in 80 matches. 

While at Watford, a club for which he failed to register a senior appearance, Ikpeazu enjoyed loan spells across the Football League with Crewe Alexandra, Blackpool, Port Vale and Doncaster Rovers.

Pre-match chat

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Head-to-head

Ahead of what will be just the 14th meeting between the two teams, the Royals will be hopeful of continuing their good record against Wycombe with a 10th win over the Wanderers. 

That was the case last time we met, back in mid-October, when Lucas João struck again with the game's only goal to secure a 1-0 victory for the Royals over Ainsworth's side at Madejski Stadium.

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Reading have their last four matches against Wycombe, dating back to September 2001, when the teams spent a three year stint together in Division two.

Ref watch

Dean Whitestone will be the man in the middle this evening, for what will be his second Reading game of the season.

Whitestone has already officiated one Royals match this season, having been in charge back in January during our 3-0 win over Coventry City at Madejski Stadium, during which he sent off Coventry defender Callum McFadzean and booked three Reading players, Lucas Joao, Michael Morrison and Tom Holmes.

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Mark Pottage and Nik Barnard will assist Whitestone at Adams Park, while Stephen Martin will be the fourth official on this occasion.

During Whitestone's 22 league games to date, he has brandished 40 yellow cards and two additional red cards.

Reminder

A polite reminder to our supporters that no unauthorised access will be permitted to this game, so supporters must not travel to Adams Park.

We can’t wait to see you all again soon – but for now it’s important that when we play, please stay away.

 

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Match Reports

📝 Match Report | Wycombe claim scrappy win in a tale of two missed penalties

Royals frustrated by Wanderers at Adams Park

23 February 2021

A scrappy second half goal earned Wycombe Wanderers victory on a disappointing evening for the Royals on the road - with both teams missing late penalties on a frustrating night at Adams Park.

In the opening minutes, Semedo was penalised for a foul on Onyedinma and Jordan Obita floated a deep cross into the Reading box which was calmly glanced clear by a Reading head.

Onyedinma arrowed a shot wide of the left upright a little later and on the quarter hour mark Knight's powerful run led to a ball our to McCleary who floated a cross into the box where Ikpeazu could only help it on its way at the back post and the ball floated away from danger. The hosts had started brightly.

The best chance of the opening period though fell to the Royals, Ejaria slotting a ball through the Wanderers' back line for Rinomhota to dart onto and he controlled the ball and only had Stockdale to beat. The Wycombe keeper did well though and got a strong arm to the midfielder's stabbed effort.

Stockdale got right behind a Semedo strike from range soon after as the Royals began to grow into the game.

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Laurent was next to threaten, powering his way down the left side of the Wycombe box and collecting a one-two before sending a low cross into the area where Joao tried in vain to apply a clever flick and turn it goalwards.

Ejaria swung in a good set piece from the left next and Holmes and Moore both saw shots charged down in a packed Chairboys box, before Ejaria scuffed a follow-up effort wide.

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A quite superb save from Stockdale denied Ejaria's long range drive that looked set for the top right corner.

Rafael easily gathered in a flicked header from Ikpeazu before Knight was rightly booked for a late lunging tackle on Morrison. But the game remained goalless at the break.

Half-time: Wycombe Wanderers 0-0 Reading

Reading started the second half as they ended the first. Joao rolled his man on the edge of the box and laid the ball back to Holmes flying forward. Rinomhota received the ball and took aim but too many Wycombe bodies were in the way to trouble Stockdale.

But against the run of play, Wycombe took the lead with a scrappy opener. A whipped McCleary cross was parried by Rafael at the near post, an acrobatic overhead looped to the back post where it was nodded down by Stewart and Onyedinma toed the ball past Rafael from close range to make it 1-0.

Reading looked for a leveller. Olise's free kick deflected off the Wycombe wall and looped into Stockdale's arms on the bounce. Joao was then slid in by Semedo but barged off the ball by Stewart as he raced towards the Wanderers' box.

Laurent tiptoed his way through a couple of challenges but could only stab his right-footed effort inches wide of the bottom right corner.

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With 20 minutes remaining, Reading had their opportunity to equalise. Ejaria split the Wycombe defence with a pass that found Rinomhota in behind the Wycombe defence and Tafazolli tripped him as he looked to pull the trigger. The referee pointed to the spot and Tafazolli was shown a straight red card, but Joao stepped up and slammed the spotkick against the crossbar and over.

Reading upped their urgency and David Wheeler nodded a Holmes header off his goalline with a quarter of an hour remaining.

The Royals threw on Puscas and Baldock, but the hosts had a golden chance to make sure of the win when McIntyre was adjudged to have bundled over Ikpeazu. Rafael was equal to it though and thhe game remained alive. 

It was turning into a frantic finish, but the Royals couldn't find the goal they needed. McIntyre picked out Joao with a direct ball but the Royals' star striker couldn't bring it under control and get a shot away.

At the start of five minutes of injury time, Baldock tried to flick a cross goalwards but it was easy for Stockdale to collect. 

Wycombe wound down the clock and Reading were left frustrated.

Full-time: Wycombe Wanderers 1-0 Reading

Wycombe Wanderers: Stockdale, Grimmer, Stewart (c), Tapazolli, Wheeler, Knight, Obita, Mehmeti (Thompson 74), Onyedinma (McCarthy 82), McCleary (Gape 82), Ikpeazu (Muskwe 90).
Unused subs: Anderson, Kashket, Horgan, Ofoborh.
Yellow: Knight, McCleary
Red: Tafazolli
Goals: Onyedinma 49

Reading: Rafael, Holmes (Aluko 84), McIntyre, Moore (c), Morrison, Rinomhota, Laurent, Semedo, Ejaria (Baldock 84), Olise (Puscas 79), João.
Unused subs: Southwood, Richards, Esteves, Yiadom, Dorsett, Tetek, Aluko, Baldock.
Yellow: Puscas.

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