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Royals XI in 2-2 friendly

22 October 2013

Blackman and Ugwu score past Bournemouth

Reading XI 2 (Blackman pen 32, Ugwu 75)
Bournemouth XI 2 (Pittman pen 60, 70)

A number of first team players gained important match fitness as the Royals drew 2-2 with Bournemouth in a friendly at Hogwood Park on Tuesday afternoon.

Hope Akpan, Nick Blackman, Shaun Cummings, Stuart Taylor and Jake Taylor all got 90 minutes under their belts in an entertaining game with the Cherries.

Royals striker Blackman put the Royals in front from the spot before half time, before Cherries forward Brett Pitman turned the game on its head by equalising via a penalty and then giving the visitors the lead with a cracking free kick.

But Gozie Ugwu finished off a fantastic attacking move to level the scores and seal a four-goal draw with the south-coast club.

The first ten minutes set the tone for a end-to-end game at Hogwood Park, Akpan having the first chance of the match when he saw his shot from distance blocked before Blackman's follow up rolled just wide.

Royals goalkeeper Stuart Taylor made a couple of solid saves to keep the Cherries at bay early on, before the hosts took the lead just after the half-hour mark.

Shepherd Murombedzi was fouled inside the area, and Blackman cleverly feinted before converting the penalty past Bournemouth goalkeeper Shwan Jalal.

Reading began the second half just as brightly as the first and caused the Cherries plenty of problems from set-pieces, while Taylor was called upon at the other end and made a terrific double save to deny the visitors.

But on the hour mark, Bournemouth were awarded a questionable penalty when midfielder Aaron Kuhl challenged for the ball. Pittman stroked home the penalty calmly to level.

In search of an instant reprieve, the Royals were screaming for a penalty when Blackman was clearly clipped by his marker through on goal but nothing was given.

And that proved to be key, as the Cherries went up the other end five minutes later to take the lead. Pitman swept a fantastic free kick into the corner of the net, with nothing goalkeeper Taylor could about it.

But just five minutes later, the Royals equalised by scoring a fantastic team goal. In a rapid one-touch attack, substitute Liam Kelly played a through ball to Cummings down the right hand side and the defender delivered an inch-perfect ball into Ugwu - who duly found the back of the net.

The goal ended a pulsating 15 minute period of the game, and was the final serious attempt on goal as the final whistle blew on a 2-2 friendly draw at Hogwood Park.

Royals: S Taylor; Cummings, Griffin, Cooper (Sweeney 61), Keown; Akpan (C), Kuhl (Kelly 61), Murombedzi (Tshibola 78), J Taylor; Ugwu, Blackman.

Cherries: Jalal, Bassele (Purches 82), Addison, Elphick, Bihmoutine (McCarthy 30), Losasso, MacDonald, O'Kane, Cornick, Pitman, Thomas (Chiedozie 70).


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