MX23RW : Sunday, August 1 03:26:45| >> :600:235686:235686:
Feb 22, 2014 at 3pm UK at Madejski Stadium
BlackburnBlackburn Rovers
FT(HT: 0-1)
Conway (36')

Preview: Reading vs. Blackburn Rovers

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Championship encounter between playoff-chasing pair Reading and Blackburn at the Madejski Stadium.

With a number of teams enviably eyeing Reading's current league position of sixth in the Championship table, they will be eager not to slip up when they host Blackburn Rovers at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday.

The Royals occupy the final playoff spot and have a four-point gap separating them from their nearest two challengers, but they both have a game in hand and will be looking to pounce upon any mistake.

Confidence will be sky-high at the Madejski, however, as they beat promotion-chasing Queens Park Rangers 3-1 at Loftus Road on Sunday, handing Harry Redknapp's side just their second home league defeat of the season.

Nigel Adkins will stress the importance of building on that victory, however, after they followed up good wins over Blackpool and Millwall with a disappointing home defeat to Sheffield Wednesday recently.

They have won five and lost two of their last seven matches, finding the back of the net 19 times during that spell while conceding eight.

Their home form has been mixed recently, however. Having begun the season with a nine-match unbeaten streak at the Madejski, they have lost three, drawn one and won two of the next six.

Adkins could name an unchanged side to the one that beat QPR after Kaspars Gorkss had his red card rescinded, with Jason Roberts, Jem Karacan, Wayne Bridge, Mikele Leigertwood and Sean Morrison all still struggling with injuries.

Blackburn are one of the teams throwing envious glances towards Reading, and they will not have given up on catching the Royals just yet.

A victory on Saturday for the visitors would close the gap between them to four points, while Blackburn also have the luxury of a game in hand to further put pressure on Adkins's side.

However, wins have not come easily for Rovers recently, with just one in their last six matches in all competitions.

Their main problem has come through drawing games having shared the spoils in three of their last four Championship outings - the only exception being a 2-0 win over Blackpool.

Three points would be invaluable for Gary Bowyer's team, but it is something they have managed just three times on the road this season, drawing six and losing six away from home.

They haven't won any of their last four, but have held Barnsley and Middlesbrough to draws in their last two, and would settle for a similar result on Saturday.

Blackburn have not played for two weeks and will be without Bowyer on the sidelines after he was handed a touchline ban for his conduct during his side's 2-2 draw with Barnsley last month.

The manager is likely to name an unchanged side for the game, keeping faith with Jordan Rhodes up front despite the goals drying up for the Scotsman.

Recent form

Reading: WLWWWLW

Blackburn: LLDDWD

Possible starting lineups

Reading: McCarthy; Gunter, Pearce, Gorkss, Obita; McCleary, Akpan, Williams, McAnuff; Pogrebnyak, Le Fondre

Blackburn: Robinson; Kane, Hanley, Dann, Spurr; Taylor, Lowe, Cairney, Dunn; Gestede; Rhodes

Sports Mole says: 2-1

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Reading manager Nigel Adkins looks on during the match against Ipswich on August 3, 2013
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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
United StatesUnited States19201352
Olympics flagOlympic Athletes from Russia11151137
Great BritainGreat Britain9101231
Today's Olympic highlights header

Sunday's key events

· The men's golf reaches its conclusion, with plenty of players still in medal contention. Home favourite Hideki Matsuyama is one shot off Xander Schauffele's lead, while Great Britain's Paul Casey is another shot further back and Tommy Fleetwood is also in the mix (11.30pm-8am)

· Great Britain have already made history in the BMX events in Tokyo, something Charlotte Worthington and Declan Brooks will be looking to add to in the women's (2.10am) and men's (3.10am) freestyle finals

· The final day of swimming action begins with the men's 50m freestyle final. Ben Proud could add to a medal-laden Games in the pool for Team GB so far, although he is up against USA's Caeleb Dressel, who is going for his fourth gold in Tokyo (2.30am)
· From sprint to endurance, Great Britain's second medal hope of the day comes through Daniel Jervis in the men's 1500m freestyle final (2.44am)
· Team GB will again be among the heavy favourites for gold in the last swimming event of the Games - the men's 4x100m medley relay final - having won the mixed event in a world record time on Saturday (3.36am)

· Already guaranteed at least a bronze, Pat McCormack takes part in the men's welterweight semi-final against Ireland's Aidan Walsh with a spot in the gold medal final at stake (4.03am)
· Ben Whittaker is also in the semi-finals of the men's light heavyweight and will be looking to continue Team GB's success in the ring (4.51am)

· There will be a surprise on the top of the men's tennis podium after Novak Djokovic missed out on a medal altogether. Alexander Zverev takes on Karen Khachanov in the second match on Centre Court at the Ariake Tennis Park (7am-2pm)

· Alison Young will be going for gold in the women's laser radial medal race (7.33am)

· Team GB's Max Whitlock will look to defend his 2016 Olympic title in the men's pommel horse final (10.41am)

· The men's high jump final includes GB's Tom Gale, although his chances of a medal look bleak (11.10am)
· So often the blue-riband event of the Olympics, the men's 100m final takes place as the world's fastest bid to be crowned Usain Bolt's successor. Three Brits have made it into the semi-finals (11.15am-11.32am), and the final looks wide open after an underwhelming display by favourite Trayvon Bromell on Saturday (1.50pm)

· Great Britain face India in the men's quarter-final (1pm)

> Today's schedule in full
Todays Game Header Right
Scottish Premiership
Taca da Liga
Pre-Season Friendlies
Belgian Pro League
Swiss Super League
Russian Premier League
Ukrainian Premier League
Swedish Allsvenskan
Danish Superliga
Belarusian Premier League
Major League Soccer
Copa Diego Maradona
Uruguayan Primera Division
Liga MX

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