Rotherham vs Reading by Luke
Rotherham had a big chance last Saturday evening to get a victory in front of own fans and remove much of their relegation battle concerns, however the team stood with a 1:1 draw against Norwich despite the fact that they were playing with a man more since 26th minute when the visiting side had their striker Grabban excluded following a straight red card.
Even though they played with a man less, visitors from Norwich scored the opener in 59th minute via Hooper, while the hosts had supremacy on the field since that moment, but only managed to level up the score four minutes before the final whistle with a goal from Bowery. However, it has to be said that the home side might have deserved more out of the game, having created much more chances in the progress. Anyhow, they are now only a point above relegating placed Millwall, but with a game in hand, which means that the team will survive for sure in case they get a victory here against Reading. Right defender Frazer Richardson (23/0) is the only injury worry for the home team as he remains doubtful, with offensive midfielder Jordan Bowery surely returning to the starting lineup for this game.
Reading, on the other side, rotated their squad a lot last weekend, suffering 2:0 defeat at home against Brentford. Coach made number of changes, as the team lost all the competitive motives for this season, being already enough away from the relegation battle and away from promotional positions. They are using last rounds as a build up for the next season, to see on which younger players the team can count.
However, such approach usually isn't followed with positive results, as the team now has a run of seven matches without a victory, including three draws in the progress. General impression was that the team lacked experience in the previous game, as they weren't that outplayed against Brentford, but simply didn't go into the game as expected, conceding the first goal via Judge already in seventh minute. Just when the side looked like they are leveling the things on the field, they conceded second one in 65th via Tarkowski and couldn't respond later on. Striker Pavel Pogrebnyak is hoping for a return here, while the visiting side might make number of changes in this one, after resing several more important players. However, it remains to be seen what the coach will decide this time.
Rotherham suffered three points punishment last week, but this game is more than crucial for them now. Disregarding what team the visitors field, home side will remain much closer to get the victory as they have all the motive in this one. I belive their chance of confirming survival way above 50% currently given by the books.