MATCH FACTS: READING vs CARDIFF
Club News2nd April
Reading vs Cardiff City
Venue: Madejski Stadium
Date: Saturday, 4th April 2015, 3:00pm
The Bluebirds head to F.A. Cup semi-finalists Reading FC on Saturday as the Sky Bet Championship returns following a two-week international break. Russell Slade's side have picked up 10 points from the past six games, and remain unbeaten on the road in the road since January.
CARDIFF CITY PLAYER
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- Cardiff and Reading have fought on two occasions this season so far, with one win for each side
- Sean Morrison could play against his former side, as could Royals man and City Academy graduate Chris Gunter
- Eoin Doyle netted his first Cardiff City goal last time out, against Birmingham City
- The Royals have a busy month, with eight games including the F.A. Cup Semi Final against Arsenal
- Seven points separate the two Sky Bet Championship side's heading into Saturday's match
Jordan ObitaKEY OPPOSITION PLAYER:
It's been an exceptional last twelve months for the England U21 international. While he has been known the play on the left side of midfield in previous years, Obita's move to left back last season has helped him cement his place in the Royals line-up. Alongside goalkeeper Adam Federici, the 21-year-old has made the most appearances for Reading this term, with 41 games already played in league and cup competitions. He could be set for a second consecutive 'Player of the Season' award, following his 2013/14 triumph. Obita may not have hit the back of the net during 2014/15, but the Bluebirds will have to be wary of his blistering pace.
Kwesi AppiahONE TO WATCH:
Ghana international Appiah was signed on a temporary deal from Crystal Palace on loan deadline day last week. He netted six goals during a short term switch to Cambridge United earlier in the year, but the striker will be well aware of the challenges he could face in the Championship. Appiah has spent most of his career in non-league football, scoring 35 times in 34 games for Margate before his move to Selhurst Park in 2012. While he has yet to score for Palace, the 24-year-old forward will be looking to use the busy month of April to impress both Steve Clarke and Alan Pardew.
RECENT FORM (ALL COMPETITIONS)
Cardiff City: LWLWDW
Last time out: Cardiff City 2-0 Birmingham City– Saturday, 21st March 2015, Sky Bet Championship
The Bluebirds dominated proceedings at Cardiff City Stadium, and deservedly secured all three points in the Welsh Capital City. Second half goals from Eoin Doyle and Peter Whittingham ensured the win for Russell Slade's side, who went into the international break after a seven-point-week.
Cardiff City: Marshall, Fabio, Malone, Ecuele Manga, Morrison, Ralls, Whittingham, Gunnarsson (Kennedy), Noone (Adeyemi), Revell (Doyle), Jones. Subs Not Used: Moore, Gabbidon, O’Keefe, James.
Last time out: Charlton Athletic 3-2 Reading – Saturday, 21st March 2015, Sky Bet Championship
Yoni Buyens netted twice as Charlton came from behind to beat the Royals in their last match before the spring internationals. Pavel Pogrebnyak put the FA Cup semi-finalists ahead with a neat finish but Buyens equalised with a penalty after Michael Hector's handball. Buyens made it 2-1 when he converted Joe Gomez's delivery and Simon Church added a third from Tony Watt's cross. Reading had Daniel Williams sent off for a second booking before Pogrebnyak pulled a goal back for the visitors.
Reading: Federici, Gunter, A.Pearce, Hector, Obita, McCleary, Williams, Norwood (Karacan), Robson-Kanu (Blackman), Mackie, Pogrebnyak. Subs Not Used: Akpan, Taylor, Andersen, Cooper, Stacey.
LAST LEAGUE MEETING
2014/15: Friday 21st November, Championship: Cardiff City 2-1 Reading
Cardiff City recorded a fifth-successive home victory under the Friday night lights as they saw off the visiting Reading 2-1. The Bluebirds broke the deadlock midway through the first half when Peter Whittingham’s fierce corner kick delivery was turned into his own net by Royals centre-back Alex Pearce.
It continued to be a nightmare evening for Pearce as, with half time looming, he hauled down his former teammate Adam Le Fondre for a City spot-kick. The challenge earned the defender a red card and saw the score-line doubled, as Whittingham dispatched the resultant penalty with consummate ease. The Royals set up a nervy finale when Michael Hector drove a low shot through Marshall with ten minutes remaining, but City held strong to secure all three points.
Cardiff City: Marshall, Connolly (Fábio), Turner, S Morrison, Brayford, Noone (Daehli), Whittingham, Gunnarsson, Pilkington, Le Fondre, Macheda (Jones). Subs Not Used: Ecuele Manga, Adeyemi, R Morrison, Moore.
Reading: Federici, Kelly, Gunter, Pearce, Hector, Norwood, Williams (Taylor), Robson-Kanu (Blackman), Obita, Murray, Cox (McCleary). Subs Not Used: Andersen, Cummings, Cooper, Tshibola.