MX23RW : Wednesday, October 20 21:46:20| >> :600:114254:114254:
Oct 16, 2021 at 3pm UK at Madejski Stadium
Swift (77')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Brittain (29'), Gomes (56')

Preview: Reading vs. Barnsley - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Championship clash between Reading and Barnsley, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

In-form Reading host struggling Barnsley in the Championship on Saturday.

The Royals sit 10th in the table and two points off the playoff places, while the Tykes dropped into the relegation zone before the international break and sit 22nd.

Match preview

Reading's Tom Dele Bashiru celebrates scoring their second goal on September 14, 2021© Reuters

Following a poor opening month of the season, Reading have got back on track of late, winning four of their last five matches.

Junior Hoilett netted the only goal of the game against his former club Cardiff City in a 1-0 win for the Royals in south Wales a fortnight ago.

It was Reading's second clean sheet in three matches, but they still have the second-worst defence in the Championship this season having conceded 19 goals.

Veljko Paunovic praised his team's "fantastic team spirit" against the Bluebirds and the Serbian says he is fully focussed on driving the club forward, despite rumours of an impending points deduction.

The Select Car Leasing Stadium is becoming a difficult place for teams to visit, as Reading have lost just one of their last 12 home league matches.

Barnsley manager Markus Schopp on August 28, 2021© Reuters

Barnsley travel to Berkshire with no away wins and just three points on the road all season in what has been a difficult campaign so far after defeat in the playoffs in 2020-21.

Markus Schopp succeeded West Bromwich Albion-bound Valerien Ismael in the summer, but the Tykes have just one victory from their opening 11 league games under the Austrian and are winless in their last nine matches – the club's worst run of form in almost two years.

The Yorkshire outfit lost for the third successive game two weeks ago, conceding in the 89th minute in a 1-0 defeat to Millwall.

Barnsley are the joint-lowest scorers in the Championship with just seven goals to their name, having drawn a blank five times so far.

The Tykes have failed to beat Reading in their last eight meetings since a 3-1 victory in 2014.

Reading Championship form:
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W

Barnsley Championship form:
  • L
  • D
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • L

Team News

Reading manager Veljko Paunovic pictured on September 18, 2021© Reuters

Barnsley are still without several key players, with Josh Benson and Carlton Morris sidelined through injury and Mads Andersen and Aapo Halme back in training but not yet ready to feature.

Schopp has said that William Hondermarck and Remy Vita are set to be involved in the matchday squad, with the Austrian describing the two 20-year-olds as "interesting options".

Cauley Woodrow is the Tykes' top scorer with three goals, but only one of those has come from open play; the others have been a free-kick and a penalty.

Junior Hoilett has picked up an injury on international duty, which could force a Reading reshuffle with Tom Dele-Bashiru moving out wide, Josh Laurent returning to his natural holding midfield position and summer signing Scott Dann coming into start in defence for the first time.

Hoilett adds to the club's already lengthy injury list, with Andy Rinomhota the closest to returning out of those currently sidelined.

George Puscas has not scored in his last 16 appearances, meaning teenager Jahmari Clarke is pushing for a start upfront after netting a hat-trick for the under-23s on Monday.

Reading possible starting lineup:
Southwood; Yiadom, Moore, Dann, Rahman; Laurent, Drinkwater; Dele-Bashiru, Swift, Ejaria; Puscas

Barnsley possible starting lineup:
Collins; Sibbick, Helik, Kitching; Brittain, Palmer, Styles, B. Williams; Iseka, Woodrow, Oduor

SM words green background

We say: Reading 2-0 Barnsley

These are two teams at completely different ends of the confidence scale, meaning Reading should be strong favourites to win this game. The international break will have given Barnsley the chance to reset, but they are still missing several key players and look set to struggle for a few more weeks.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or draw in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Draw:data

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