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Preview: Reading vs. Wycombe Wanderers - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Tuesday's Championship clash between Reading and Wycombe Wanderers, including predictions and team news.

Two sides who have had very different starts to the season in the Championship meet on Tuesday night as Reading host Wycombe Wanderers.

The Royals sit second in the table – behind leaders Bristol City on just goals scored – while Wycombe are 23rd and only being kept off the bottom by Sheffield Wednesday's points deduction.


Match preview

Veljko Paunovic pictured in March 2019© Reuters

Reading's 0-0 draw with Middlesbrough on Saturday ended their four-game winning run in the Championship but ensured they remained as one of just three sides still unbeaten.

It was also their fourth clean sheet of the campaign, giving them the joint-best defensive record in the division along with Watford.

Veljko Paunovic may be confident of another shutout on Tuesday night as Wycombe have netted just once so far this season – Scott Kashket's early goal against Millwall on Saturday.

It was the first ever goal that the Chairboys had scored in the second tier, but they still fell to a fifth straight defeat as the Lions came from behind to win 2-1.

Their recent away record is not a pretty one as they have won just twice in their last 12 games on the road, although crucially one of those was a 4-1 victory at Fleetwood Town in last season's League One playoffs.

Wycombe Wanderers boss Gareth Ainsworth pictured on September 7, 2019© Reuters

Reading (7.8) and Wycombe (8.2) rank 24th and 23rd respectively for average shots taken per game in the Championship, a remarkable statistic considering where both teams place in the table.

The Royals' impressive start to the season – their best since 1985 – has come very much as a surprise considering that Paunovic was only appointed a week before the campaign began.

This fixture is actually somewhat of a local derby – Reading and Wycombe are both each other's closest club in the current top four divisions of English football.

They have not met in the league since February 2002 but drew 1-1 in the first round of the Carabao Cup last season before Reading won the tie on penalties.

Reading Championship form: WWWWD
Reading form (all competitions): WLWWWD

Wycombe Wanderers Championship form: LLLLL
Wycombe Wanderers form (all competitions): DLLLLL


Team News

Reading's George Puscas in action with Watford's James Garner in the Championship on October 3, 2020© Reuters

With a busy few weeks coming up, Veljko Paunovic will be torn between playing the same side to keep Reading's early season momentum going and making changes to keep his squad fresh.

Lucas Joao appears the most likely player to be rested on Tuesday following a recent injury, with George Puscas in line to start up front.

New signing Tomas Esteves may be seen as the most natural choice at right-back but it would be harsh to drop Tom Holmes after a couple of strong performances.

Gareth Ainsworth is hoping to welcome back a number of injured players in the next few weeks as he desperately tries to get points on the board.

Ryan Tafazolli, Dominic Gape, Alex Pattison and Uche Ikpeazu have all missed recent fixtures but are on the verge of a return.

38-year-old Adebayo Akinfenwa made his first ever Championship appearance as a substitute at the weekend but is likely to continue to be used off the bench rather than as a starter.

Reading possible starting lineup:
Rafael; Holmes, Moore, Morrison, Richards; Laurent, Rinomhota; Meite, Olise, Ejaria; Puscas

Wycombe Wanderers possible starting lineup:
Allsopp; Grimmer, Stewart, Knight, Jacobson; Wheeler, Freeman, Thompson, Horgan; Kashket, Samuel


SM words green background

We say: Reading 2-0 Wycombe Wanderers

Reading are one of the worst teams that goal-shy Wycombe could have hoped to face as they continue to search for their first points in the Championship. A sixth consecutive defeat seems likely for the Chairboys as the Royals continue to march on.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals 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.Over 1.5:data

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General view of Wycombe Wanderers' Adams Park from November 2014
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CNorwich CityNorwich462910775363997
4Swansea CitySwansea4623111256391780
5Barnsley46239145850878
6Bournemouth4622111373462777
7Reading461913146254870
8Cardiff CityCardiff4618141466491768
9Queens Park RangersQPR461911165755268
10Middlesbrough461810185553264
11Millwall461517144752-562
12Luton TownLuton461711184152-1162
13Preston North EndPreston46187214956-761
14Stoke CityStoke461515165052-260
15Blackburn RoversBlackburn4615121965541157
16Coventry CityCoventry461413194961-1255
17Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest461216183745-852
18Birmingham CityBirmingham461313203761-2452
19Bristol City46156254668-2251
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield461213215071-2149
21Derby CountyDerby461111243658-2244
RWycombe WanderersWycombe461110253969-3043
RRotherham UnitedRotherham46119264460-1642
RSheffield WednesdaySheff Weds461211234061-2141

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