MX23RW : Sunday, June 13 11:06:44| >> :600:590077:590077:
Nov 7, 2020 at 12.30pm UK at Madejski Stadium
ReadingReading
0-3
StokeStoke City
FT(HT: 0-2)
Campbell (23'), Fletcher (35'), Brown (90+4')
Thompson (4'), McClean (86')

Result: Reading suffer third defeat on the bounce as Stoke cruise to victory

Reading had won seven of their eight opening matches.

Early Championship pacesetters Reading suffered a third successive defeat by losing 3-0 to Stoke at the Madejski Stadium.

Reading dominated most of the first half but were punished for defensive lapses when Stoke threatened on the break.

Tyrese Campbell made it 1-0 in the 23rd minute with a mis-hit effort and Steven Fletcher struck 12 minutes later – both with their fourth goals of the season.

Campbell struck a post early in the second period and although Reading again showed the more attacking intentions, Stoke proved resilient and then added a third through Jacob Brown deep into stoppage time.

Reading had won seven of their eight opening matches to, at one stage, lead the second tier by seven points.

But a 3-2 defeat at Coventry, followed by a 3-0 home loss to Preston on Wednesday, had seen the gap to the chasing pack reduce substantially.

Stoke had won four of their previous eight league matches but had suffered defeat twice in their past three outings.

Reading began brightly and created two excellent chances in the opening exchanges – both falling to Benfica loanee Alfa Semedo.

His first opportunity came from a deflected Tomas Esteves cross, which he nodded firmly into the ground and goalwards only for Stoke keeper Angus Gunn to make a fine save.

Semedo's second effort was a similar header from a similar position – but Gunn again proved equal to it with another solid stop.

Stoke did not initially offer much going forward, with home centre back Lewis Gibson – on loan from Everton – having little to do on his debut.

But after John Obi Mikel had blazed high over the crossbar, Stoke took the lead – hugely against the run of play – midway through the first half.

Tomas Esteves failed to get any distance with an attempted clearing header and Campbell pounced with a half-scuffed shot.

Ten minutes before the break, Stoke increased their lead.

Reading keeper Rafael's poor pass out was nodded back into the home area by Tommy Smith, with Fletcher reacting quickest to slot past an embarrassed Rafael.

Gibson could have reduced the deficit shortly before the interval but miscued an Esteves free kick when arriving alone at the far post.

Esteves drove narrowly wide soon after the restart but Campbell almost made it 3-0 when his delicate curler cannoned off an upright with Rafael beaten.

As Reading pushed in search of a way back into the game, Esteves and substitute Michael Olise both saw efforts miss the target.

Sam Baldock went close towards the end, his close-range attempt dribbling past Gunn's far post, but Stoke made it 3-0 in the 95th minute when Brown seized on Gibson's poor backpass to slot home.

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General view of Reading's Madejski Stadium taken 2016
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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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