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Match Previews

🔜 Ahead of the game | Bouncing back against the Bees

A preview of the Royals’ trip to West London

18 December 2020

Saturday marks our first ever visit to Brentford’s new home – and there won’t be any supporters in to see it. Our game at the Brentford Community Stadium kicks off a festive programme which could see plenty of behind-closed doors games.

Whether fans are in or not for any of these fixtures, the reward for a win is the same. And in the case of Brentford, it’s an especially important game as we aim to recover from midweek defeat by beating a team right on our tail in the table.

It’s a side that missed out on promotion to the top tier last season in cruel fashion – throwing away an automatic spot and then being defeated in the Play-off Final. But they have started well again this season and could threaten come the season’s end.

iFollow

There’s no TV coverage of this one whatsoever, 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 is also the option of getting audio commentary only, as well as packages available for international fans.

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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.

Pre-match chat

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The opposition

Thomas Frank’s side have brushed aside the disappointment of missing out on promotion last season by making another solid start to the new season – and as we approach the midpoint of the year, they are in the mix again.

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Having lost last season’s top scorer Ollie Watkins to Aston Villa in the summer, they have found a ready replacement in Ivan Toney – 16 goals in 19 Championship matches make him the league’s top scorer so far this year.

They’re undefeated in their last 11 – although that includes six draws, and most recently against Watford in a game where Ethan Pinnock was dismissed.

Ref watch

Our fixture will take place under the stewardship of Keith Stroud – neither Reading or Brentford have the best memories of his only other game for either side this season, as we both lost to Stoke when he was referee! The Bees lost 3-2 to the Potters in October, then a fortnight later we were vanquished 3-0.

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He was also the man in charge of last year’s first leg of the Play-off Semi-finals between Brentford and Swansea – sending off Rico Henry for the Bees in 1-0 loss.

Ian Cooper and Jonathan Hunt are the assistants this weekend, and David Rock is fourth official.


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