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Match Reports

📰 Report | Royals coast into the Fourth Round with fine 2-0 win

Goals from Lucas Boye and Jordan Obita earned Mark Bowen's men a fully deserved cup win at Bloomfield Ro

14 January 2020

Reading scored two and hit the woodwork four times in a fine Third Round replay display at Bloomfield Road that sets up a Fourth Round fixture against either Carlisle United or Cardiff City.

The home side made most of the early running, with Tom McIntyre in the right place at the right time to clear a couple of crosses into the penalty area with good defensive headers.

The Royals were testing their hosts too though; a sweeping crossfield ball from McCleary landed at the feet of Obita who volleyed a first time cross into the box - but the Tangerines cleared the danger with ease.

Both Boye and Howe tried their luck from range but arrowed well wide of the target, Boye firing to the right and Howe dragging his effort past the left upright.

Loader came much closer just after a quarter of an hour, turning well onto his right foot and skimming the side netting with a fierce right-footed strike from 20 yards out. And the Royals were beginning to dominate, Howe fizzing a tasty ball across the six yard box but no-one on hand to tap it goalwards in blue and white hoops.


Gnanduillet scuffed a difficult chance harmlessly wide when falling backwards onto a low cross from the right, then at the other end Olise got a shot away, cannoning off a Blackpool defender's arm and deflecting into the arms of goalkeeper Mark Howard.

Callum Guy came closest to breaking the deadlock when Husband teed him up for a strike from just outside the box, and he drilled his effort low and inches wide of the bottom left corner.

But the Royals deservedly earned a half-time lead when Lucas Boye stabbed home in the 43rd minute. Good work from Garath McCleary down the right saw him cross low into the Blackpool box. A scuffed half-clearance fell loose and Boye was first to react, sliding in to stab the ball through the goalkeeper's legs from six yards out.

The hosts nearly levelled before the break however, Gnanduillet glancing a header just wide of the stanchion from a fine inswinging Liam Feeney corner.

Half-time | Blackpool 0-1 Reading

It was so nearly 2-0 to the visitors in the first minute of the second half when Olise turned inside the area and placed a left-footed shot wide of Howard's dive, only to see it skim off the base of the post and skid wide.

McCleary took aim from 25 yards out and his swerving shot was just about gathered in by the Tangerines keeper. But it took a fabulous instinctive stop from Sam Walker to preserve Reading's lead, diving to his right to parry Virtue's header from six yards out.

Olise stung the palms of Howard with a well-taken free kick that the Blackpool keeper had to push over his crossbar. But Walker was in action again as he leapt low to his right this time to keep out an excellent Delfouneso header that looked like it might creep in for 1-1.


The tie was still very much alive as Blackpool searched for an equaliser; Gnanduillet turning inside the area only for a combination of McIntyre and Walker to snuff out the danger.

Twice Reading were denied a second goal by the woodwork with 20 minutes remaining. First, Boye unleashed a howitzer from 22 yards out that beat Howard and cannoned off the crossbar.

Then, moments later, Obita made progress down the left and crossed low into the box where Richards slid in at the near post to turn the ball against the base of the left post.


Boye tried an audacious overhead effort as a cleared corner dropped over the Argentinean forward's shoulder, but the ball clattered into a Blackpool body and the home side somehow stayed in the tie. 

The second goal finally came with eight minutes remaining. A deep Olise cross from the right picked out Obita whose header was kept out by Howard. But Obita was alive to the follow-up and stroked the ball under the keeper to make it 2-0.

Rinomhota headed wide from a McCleary corner soon after the Royals looked to kill off the tie. And Mark Bowen handed young England youth international Jeriel Dorsett a first team debut late in the game to take the number of Academy graduates to have represented the Royals to 56.

Boye intercepted a Blackpool pass across the box and rifled a fearsome effort past Howard only to be denied by the crossbar yet again. And there was still time for a cameo from former Blackpool hero Charlie Adam, who came off the bench in the final minute.

Carlisle and Cardiff face off in their replay tomorrow night, knowing that the winner faces a trip to the Madejski in the Fourth Round. And on tonight's showing, they won't have an easy encounter.

Full-time | Blackpool 0-2 Reading
Blackpool: Howard, Turton, Heneghan, Tilt, Husband, Virtue (Ward 61), Spearing (c) (Thompson 74), Feeney (Nuttall 85), Guy, Delfouneso, Gnanduillet.
Subs: Mafoumbi, Thorniley, Scannell, MacDonald.

Yellow: Virtue, Husband.

Reading: Walker, Howe, Richards, McIntyre, Burley (Dorsett 87), Rinomhota (Adam 90), McCleary, Olise, Obita, Loader (Aluko 86), Boye.
Unused subs: Southwood, East, Medford-Smith, House.
Goals: Boye (43), Obita (82)

Attendance: 5,213 (239 away)

Referee: Mr D Bond

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