Reading v Brighton & Hove Albion

19 Aug

Brighton striker Glenn Murray


Brighton striker Glenn Murray scored eight goals in 18 games while on loan at Reading in 2014-15

BBC coverage

How to follow:
BBC local radio; live text commentary on the BBC Sport website

Reading boss Jaap Stam could make a number of changes for the visit of Brighton on Saturday.

Midfielder Stephen Quinn will press for a start after returning from injury to sit on the bench against Newcastle.

David Stockdale could replace Niki Maenpaa in goal for Brighton after recovering from a shin injury.

Defenders Connor Goldson (knee) and Uwe Hunemeier (groin) and forward Solly March (knee) are not yet ready to return to first-team action.

Reading manager Jaap Stam told BBC Radio Berkshire:

“In one way it’s good that there are a lot of games in a short space of time. I think it’s good for the players because if you lose, you want the next game to come around to win again.

“I’m learning every week (about the Championship) and not just when we’re playing. We learn a lot that we need to stop conceding goals from set-pieces.

“That’s what has happened in the last two games and we need to be sharper on those occasions.”

Brighton & Hove Albion striker Glenn Murray told BBC Sussex:

“It has been a great start to the season, our toughest test was probably Derby away but we came through that quite comfortably and we’ve been strong at home.

“It’s nice to be up at the top of the table early, but it’s not now that it counts. We need to keep this positive start going, picking up points and maintaining momentum.

“Playing at Reading on loan was a good experience for me. It was nice at that time of my career to go out and prove to myself and other people that I could still score goals at that level.”

Analysis

Former Reading captain and BBC Radio Berkshire presenter Ady Williams: “After two straight defeats, Reading face a stiff test against top-of-the-table Brighton.

“Jaap Stam surely will make changes to the starting XI after keeping faith with the players in those two defeats against Wolves and Newcastle.

“The bare statistics are they conceded six goals and scored just the one goal (from the penalty spot) in those two games.

“Brighton have not conceded a single goal in their four matches in all competitions this season. The last time these two sides met at the Madejski Stadium, Brighton were also top of the Championship.”

BBC Sussex’s Johnny Cantor: “With Port Vale the only other side in the EFL not to concede in the league this season, Brighton will feel positive going into the game at Reading.

“Despite the loss of David Stockdale to injury and Chris Hughton’s decision to change three of his midfield, they ran out easy winners against Rotherham in midweek.

“Striker Glenn Murray seems to be relishing his return to the Albion as he faces his former club. The Seagulls’ recent record against the Royals isn’t great – with just one win in the last 12 – but they did win 1-0 in the last encounter in March.”

Match facts

  • Reading are unbeaten in their last six home league games against the Seagulls (W4 D2), stretching back to 2004.
  • Brighton’s only win in their last 12 league games against the Royals was in the most recent meeting – 1-0 in March 2016 (D4 L7).
  • Reading have won their opening two home games in all competitions this season, without conceding a goal.
  • The Seagulls have opened their league campaign with three clean sheets, something they last did in 1987-88 while in the third tier.
  • Brighton striker Glenn Murray has scored five goals in his last five Championship appearances.

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