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From the vault: Opponents in focus - Reading

Another of Pompey's no power championship opponents will be Reading, so they come under the microscope as PompeyFrippy has a look at them - we revisit this article ahead of the league meeting...

Reading Football Club were founded in 1871, and have since called 6 different grounds home. They started at the Reading Recreational Ground before moving through Reading Cricket Ground, Coley Park and Caversham Cricket Ground. In 1896, they moved to Elm Park to cater for their new-found professional status and played there for over a century, before moving to their current stadium in 1998, The Madejski Stadium, named after John Madejski, their Chairman.

Reading's most recent trophy happens to be their most prestigious one, winning the Championship in 2006. Other accolades include the Second Division in 1994 and the Third Division in 1926 and 1986. They are yet to make it into the final of the League Cup or the FA Cup.

Last 7 Season Finishing Positions
2003-04 - Division 1 - 9th
2004-05 - Championship - 7th
2005-06 - Championship - 1st (Champions)
2006-07 - Premiership - 8th
2007-08 - Premiership - 18th (Relegated)
2008-09 - Championship - 4th (Lost play-offs)
2009-10 - Championship - 9th

Previous Meetings
The last time these sides met was a happy away day for Portsmouth as they beat Reading 2-0 at the Madejski on New Years Day 2008 thanks to goals from Campbell and Utaka. The last time these sides met in the Second tier was during Pompey's promotion season when after a goalless draw at Reading, Pompey romped to a 3-0 victory despite having already clinched promotion less than a week before.

But without a doubt the most memorable meeting between these two sides happened the last time they clashed a Fratton Park in a game that every fan of both sides will remember as the day when defences went AWOL, when they played out a record breaking 11 goal thriller, with Pompey coming off 7-4 winners. A hat-trick from Benjani as well as goals from Kranjcar, Davis, Hreidarsson and a Muntari penalty was enough to clinch victory, despite Reading netting through Long, Shorey, Kitson and a Campbell own goal. It could have been more as Reading missed a penalty and Bouba Diop had a goal wrongly disallowed for offside.

This season
Reading will be the first side to visit Fratton Park this season on the 14th of August, and the return fixture at the Madejski is on the 2nd of April.

Brian McDermott has only managed lowly Slough and Woking before taking on his role at Reading, and between these jobs was a gap of nearly a decade. But McDermott's win record is just short of 50% and has only lost 8 of his 31 league matches. Bookies have Reading tipped for the play-off's, quoting them at around 12/1.

One to Watch
Ivar Ingimarsson is a powerhouse centre-back who has been with the club for 7 seasons and has racked up over 250 games. Reading's own Iceman will know a lot about Pompey's defence, having played dozens of times with Hreidarsson for Iceland and also partnering Ibrahima Sonko for 4 seasons.

Fun Fact
Reading, like Portsmouth, have a number reserved for their fans (the difference being theirs is 13 whereas ours is 12). Reading were the first club to officially register their fans as a squad number in 2001, and have since started a trend in doing so.

Written by PompeyFrippy.

The views within this article are the views of the individual who wrote and submitted this piece, sometimes solely theirs. They are not necessarily shared by the Vital Pompey Site Journalists.

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  • The Journalist

    Writer: PompeyFrippy Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

    Date:Saturday August 14 2010

    Time: 9:00AM

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    I would like the biscuit men to crumble today :-)
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