Reading v Arsenal – Match Preview

Oliver Giroud Arsenal StrikerThe Monday night fixture witnesses a fascinating duel between two clubs desperate for a win. If it is anything like the last time these two met in the Capital One Cup at the Madjeski stadium then the fans are in for a treat.

Arsenal managed to knock Reading out of the cup competition in injury time 7-5 that night, after coming back from 4-0 down. They weren’t so lucky midweek as they were booted out of the same trophy by minnows Bradford City.

It comes as the latest blow in a string of disappointing displays for the Gunners resulting in Ivan Gazidis making a public apology to the fans.

Reading are not exactly doing themselves any favours at the moment either as they too lost midweek leaking 3 goals in a comprehensive defeat to Sunderland.

The Gunners should have Olivier Giroud back in the fold following a recovery from a back problem. Laurent Koscielny has resumed training too after a thigh injury. Theo Walcott’s injury situation is due to be assessed too. Andre Santos and Abou Diaby remain out.

The Royals could be heavily boosted by the return of their two key talismans up front in the shape of Jason Roberts and Pavel Pogrebnyak. They may not be able to start but both could feature at some point at the Madjeski.  For Jimmy Kebe and Jem Karacan the game appears to have come too soon and Sean Morrison alongside Alex McCarthy are definite misses too.

The game should be a nervy encounter with the gap growing further and further from safety for Reading and Arsenal are at risk of losing touch with the top four.

Arsenal have played Reading 10 times in all competitions and won every single time so they would expect to keep that unblemished record on Monday.

Prediction: Reading 1-2 Arsenal