Akpan's first start since AprilThe Royals will be without midfielder Danny Guthrie for this afternoon's Sky Bet Championship clash with Watford at Vicarage Road because of a calf injury.
Hope Akpan makes his first start since April in midfield, while Jordan Obita will start at left back.
Michael Hector is on the bench for the Royals today after returning from a successful loan spell at Aberdeen.
Reading: McCarthy, Gunter, Pearce, Gorkss, Williams, Obita, Akpan, McCleary, McAnuff (C), Pogrebnyak, Le Fondre.
Subs: Federici, Kelly, Hector, Cummings, Drenthe, J.Taylor, Blackman.
Watford: Almunia (C), Doyley, Angella, Ekstrand; Bellerin, McGugan, Merkel, Murray, Pudil; Fabbrini, Deeney.
Subs: Woods, Nosworthy, Hall, Iriney, Faroani, Battochio, Forestieri.