Monday, August 01, 2005

Reading 0-2 Tottenham Hotspur

Reading had plenty of the play and several chances but were out of luck against Premiership opposition in our penultimate pre-season friendly on Saturday. Depleted by injuries, Reading fielded as strong a first XI as possible with the bench made up by a mixture of youth players and a trialist Rodrigue Boisfer; worryingly, with the opening league game against Plymouth a matter of days away, the substitutes had a total of 1 football league appearance between them.

Hahnemann took over in goal from Stack, who has cracked a thumb in training, and his first touch was retrieving the ball from the back of his net after 5 minutes. Glenn Little had given away possession and a simple move involving Routledge and the tempestuous Defoe gave Mido an easy chance. This was hard on Reading, who had threatened twice already through the lively Lita, and we continued to press with Doyle, Convey and Sidwell all having half-chances before our number 4 cracked the post following a Reading corner. We fell two behind right on half time as Defoe's pot-shot looped wickedly into the net off the luckless Hunt, who was given a hard time by the impressive Routledge. Defoe has an excellent scoring record at the Madejski for Bournemouth, West Ham, England U21 and now Spurs so it was no surprise to see him score but in a manner indicative of our bad luck on the afternoon it was a little sickening.

Reading continued to threaten at the start of the second half; Sonko should have scored with a header when well placed from a corner, Sidwell had a goal disallowed and Doyle should have netted with a chance he created for himself. The Tottenham goal was against saved by the post after the impressive Convey cracked a freekick against the woodwork, but at the other end Hahnemann did well to thwart Defoe on a couple of ocassions. Tottenham, fielding a strong side throughout, just about deserved their win in a game they edged with their superior passing, but Reading most definitely should have scored. Let us hope that we are saving our goals for Plymouth at the Madejski this coming Saturday.

Reading: Hahnemann, Murty, Hunt (Osano 81 mins), Ingimarsson, Sonko, Harper, Sidwell, Little, Convey (Hayes 84 mins), Lita, Doyle. Subs not used: Howell, Mullins, Castle, Cox, Boisfer, Hamer.


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