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

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

Reading square off against bottom-of-the-table Wycombe Wanderers on Tuesday evening holding a five-point cushion in the Championship playoffs.

While the visitors have lost three of their most recent four fixtures, Wycombe sit 11 points adrift of safety despite earning a draw at Millwall on Saturday.

Match preview

Reading manager Veljko Paunovic pictured in December 2020© Reuters

Remaining just six points below the top two, Reading boss Veljko Paunovic will feel that his side are still in contention for automatic promotion.

In reality, however, the Royals first need to guarantee a playoff spot having recorded three defeats in four games, the latest coming at home to Middlesbrough on Saturday.

The setback at the Madejski Stadium has given hope to the chasing pack, who had previously been relying on Bournemouth to remain without any inconsistency in the weeks ahead.

A fixture away at Wycombe has arguably come at the right time for Reading, particularly as they bid to improve on scoring just four goals in five fixtures.

Wycombe Wanderers manager Gareth Ainsworth pictured in February 2021© Reuters

However, losing out at Adams Park would give Paunovic further cause for concern, aware that this group of players have already endured one unforeseen loss of form earlier in the season.

Despite claiming four points from away fixtures at Huddersfield Town and Millwall, Wycombe find themselves in a worse position than they were 10 days ago.

Taking the result and performance in isolation, Gareth Ainsworth will be happy that his side were capable of claiming a goalless draw at a resurgent Lions side at the weekend.

However, the Chairboys are running out of games to get their fifth win on the board, and there is a feeling that maximum points must be collected against either Reading or Norwich City this week.

The reverse fixture ended in a 1-0 triumph for Reading, who prevailed at their home ground courtesy of a 64th-minute goal from Lucas Joao.

Wycombe Wanderers Championship form: DLLWLD

Reading Championship form: WDLLWL

Team News

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

Ainsworth will consider selecting the same Wycombe side which started the game at The Den on Saturday.

Garath McCleary and Admiral Muskwe are in line for a recall if changes are made, but goalkeeper David Stockdale is expected to continue between the sticks due to Ryan Allsop picking up an injury ahead of the Millwall game.

Paunovic could hand opportunities to Reading duo Sone Aluko and George Puscas after his side under-performed at the weekend.

The Royals boss may also take the chance to hand a start to defender Liam Moore, who has not featured since December 19.

Wycombe Wanderers possible starting lineup:
Stockdale; Grimmer, Stewart, Tafazolli, Obita; Onyedinma, Wheeler, Knight, Mehmeti, Horgan; Ikpeazu

Reading possible starting lineup:
Cabral; Yiadom, Moore, McIntyre, Richards; Rinomhota, Laurent; Olise, Semedo, Aluko; Joao

SM words green background

We say: Wycombe Wanderers 1-2 Reading

With wins only being good enough for Wycombe at this stage, we expect Ainsworth to instruct his players to go on the front foot. However, that may not be the right tactics against a team of Reading's quality, and the Royals could edge out their hosts in a competitive contest.


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Reading's Lucas Joao celebrates scoring against Bristol City in the Championship on February 16, 2021
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Saturday's Championship predictions including Reading vs. Middlesbrough
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