Reading v Swansea City – Match Preview

If omens are to be believed then Reading are already doomed as they reach the halfway point in the season. Its always prophesised that the team occupying the bottom place in the Premier League are destined for relegation. For the Royals it appears to be a certainty. Brian McDermotts men have tasted victory only once this term and have lost their last seven games in a row to leave their survival hopes looking slim. Its not for the want of trying though and, while they haven’t had the rub of the green on occasions, they must improve at the back if they’re to avoid defeat against Swansea.
The Swans have dismissed any fears of second seasom syndrome and look a more complete side under Michael Laudrup than they did Brendan Rodgers. With Michu scoring at will the south Wales club know they can beat any team in the league when they’re on song. And they’ll fancy their chances of beating Reading to further enhance their European push. That being said they’ll have to be wary of their Boxing Day hosts who are out to halt their torrid winless run.

Team News

Jason Roberts, Sean Morrison and Alex McCarthy are still out giving Brian McDermott no new injury concerns.

Swansea could welcome back Pablo Hernandez after he missed the last five games with a thigh injury but Angel Rangel (calf) will be missing again.

What the managers said…

“In the last three games we haven’t really performed the way I know we can. But against Arsenal we were three and four down and we fought back. You could see the spirit in the group and you certainly saw the spirit in the group on Saturday. You respond by trying to win the next two games. We have got Swansea at home and West Ham at home. We need our fans massively to be with us. They took so much credit from last year, dragging us over the line. We need them to be with us again.” Brian McDermott believes the collective spirit shared by players and supporters will guide Reading to safety (Independent)

“We are trying to improve at set-pieces. Obviously players like Leon, Nathan and Wayne have the height they have and they are the type of players we need for our football.  It is a price we pay sometimes. But at set-pieces we have problems sometimes and we have to admit that. We want to improve.” Michael Laudrup admits Swansea need to improve their defending at set pieces (Daily Mail)

Pre-match Statistic

Reading haven’t lost in their last eight Boxing Day fixtures and fans should expect goals with an average of five goals per game in the 10 Premier League fixtures hosted at the Premier League this season.

Prediction: Reading 2-2 Swansea City

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