Reading FC Match Report: 2022/2023 Season - Championship


Reading: T Ince (13), A Carroll (pen 70), T Ince (72)
Blackpool: Sonny Carey (90)

Reading have not lost at home since November, and today continued their impressive run of home results with a comfortable win over struggling Blackpool. That said, it was not a particularly impressive performance. Blackpool had more possession, more corners, and more attempts on goal, but a Tom Ince brace and a well taken penalty by Andy Carroll proved to be the difference between the sides in a match which lacked quality overall.

In a scrappy opening ten minutes there were some uneasy moments for Reading in their own penalty area as Blackpool forced three corners in quick succession. Blackpool had plenty of possession as passes from both sides continued go astray, but Reading looked more likely to score. Sarr sent a free header over from a free kick, and powerful Meite header was saved by Maxwell, before Tom Ince was rewarded for having the confidence to run at the defence. With the aid of a deflection, his low strike found its way past Maxwell. Out of respect for his previous club he chose not to celebrate his goal in front of the visiting fans.

Blackpool boldly pushed players forward but could not create a clear sight of goal. At the other end a delightful diagonal ball into the box just eluded Carroll’s head. Meite used his power and pace to get past the full back but lacked composure with his cross and the ball flew straight through a crowded goalmouth. Andy Carroll controlled a cross to the far post with his first touch but then volleyed over with his second with the goal at his mercy. Lumley had very little to do apart from distribute the ball.

Blackpool mounted a spell of pressure after half time but apart from a smart save form a snap shot from Carey, Lumley was not called upon to make a save. Reading finally found a way out of their own half when Ince released Meite with a deft flick. From the half way line Meite’s pace and strength took into the box where Nelson brought him down before he could get his shot away. Carroll insisted on taking the spot kick and struck it well sending Maxwell the wrong way to increase the lead.

With Blackpool’s lack of fire power the second goal seemed to kill the game. Blackpool lost some of their intensity and Reading began to play with a bit more freedom. A sweeping move started by Azeez cutting in from the left ended with Ince pouncing on a poor clearance to fire in number three, and that really was game over. Paul Ince decided to make several substitutions for no particular purpose and Reading lost their defensive shape allowing Carey to hammer in a consolation late in stoppage time. Lumley was understandably particularly irritated.

Overall it was good day for Reading and probably cements their place in mid table security removing any lingering worries about relegation. A couple of wins would put Reading on fifty points but I can’t see them coming in the next three games against Middlesbrough (away) and at home to Sheffield United and Millwall. However Reading do seem to grind out results at home these days.

John Wells

This Championship game took place 26 days ago in the 2022/2023 season.