News and Views

Royals Win In Wycombe Friendly

28 July 2014
By Dave Roberts

A sunny Adams Park provided the venue for an early glimpse of the aftermath from Reading FC's own Russian revolution. With the starting eleven having an average age of under 24, an insight was given to the team selection for the season and the potential struggle for mounting anything other than a mid-table finish.

The young Reading team however produced a refreshing dominant performance against a Wycombe Wanderers side that managed football league survival on the final day of last season. The 840 Reading FC fans, who made the short trip to Buckinghamshire, would have gone home satisfied to witness some positives for the new season after enduring endless rumours and pessimistic comments since the disappointing conclusion of the last.

Using the now typical Adkins 4-5-1 formation, Reading took control of the game from the start and should have taken the lead in the 4th minute when the attacking midfielder Edwards pulled his shot wide after being put clear from an Akpan through ball. With Reading controlling the possession, chances followed for Taylor and Pogrebnyak and with more clinical finishing Reading FC would have been two or three up after the first 15 minutes.

Obita caused constant issues for Wycombe in the first half with his crossing and free kicks. Taylor having a 20th minute offside goal disallowed from an Obita set piece. The disappointing Robson-Kanu had a couple of chances from the edge of area in the 22nd and 24th minute but failed the trouble the goalkeeper.

The goal finally came in the 40th minute as Obita produced a well-placed cross for the hopefully lethal Pogrebnyak to dispatch a header into the bottom corner. Chances followed for both Taylor and Robson-Kanu after some clever work by Edwards, but Reading FC were unable to add to their lead. As Cummings replaced the promising Hector at half time, the second half started with Obita playing in Centre Midfield. The game continued in the same format of the first, Reading FC dominant and pressing for more goals. Unfortunately Reading FC were unable to convert those chances into goals. Either weak shots or last ditch Wycombe tackles keeping the score down.

In the 64th minute the ever positive Edwards produced a stylish lobbed through ball for Pogrebynak but saw his shot saved by a strong right hand from Ingram. Then the enthusiastic substitute Blackman smashed an impressive rasping 30-yard effort against the bar in the 67th minute.

The second goal came in the 75th minute after good work from Gunter and Edwards allowed Taylor to produce a calm low finish past Ingram. The goal generated a flurry of substitutions as Gunter, Obita, Pearce, Morrison, Edwards, Akpan, Taylor and Pogrebnyak were replaced by the youngsters Long, Kuhl, Sweeny, Cooper, Stacey, Griffen, Tshibola, and Tanner.

The changes allowed Wycombe to come back into the game, although some nice touches were seen from Tanner and Kuhl. Blackman was unlucky not to score in the 89th minute when his back post header was well saved from Ingram. Overall it was a promising and refreshing run out for Reading FC with, in particular, impressive performances from Taylor and Edwards. Whether it was enough to give hope for the new season remains to be seen.

Reading: Federici, Gunter (c) (Long 75), Obita (Kuhl 75), Morrison (Cooper 75), Pearce (Sweeney 75), Akpan (Tshibola 75), Hector (Cummings 45), Edwards (Stacey 75), Taylor (Tanner 75), Robson-Kanu (Blackman 62), Pogrebnyak (Griffin 75).

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