Reading v Blackburn Rovers

15
Tony Mowbray will hope his Blackburn Rovers side can bounce back from two defeats in a row
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Reading could have winger Ovie Ejaria back after the Liverpool loanee missed the trip to Sheffield Wednesday through illness.

Yakou Meite may get the nod up top with Nelson Oliveira (broken nose) still injured and Sone Aluko failing to make an impact against the Owls.

Blackburn boss Tony Mowbray could hand full-back Amari’i Bell a starting place after defeat by Bristol City.

Midfielder Richard Smallwood looks set to keep his place in the side.

Reading manager Jose Gomes told BBC Radio Berkshire:

“As I’ve said before, we need to start winning games. Draws will probably not be enough to give us the points we need between now and the end of the season.

“We don’t have any easy games in the Championship, all the teams are very strong. They all have different footballing philosophies.

“There’s no easy game against any team and Blackburn are fighting for a different target to us.

“Our problem is we need points, not just one, but three and to make that happen, we need goals.”

Blackburn Rovers manager Tony Mowbray told BBC Radio Lancashire:

“We’re a competitive team in this division and we can and will win more games between now and the end of the season.

“But, for us this year in my mind was about consolidation and seeing how far we can take ourselves, if not promotion, then let’s see how high we can finish.

“I’d hope over the next month or so we can win enough games to take us beyond 50 points and then let’s see how close we can get to the top six.

“If that scenario does come along, then we can give a few of these under-23 lads an opportunity to make a name for themselves.”

Match facts

  • Reading have won their past two home Championship matches against Blackburn Rovers, doing so in 2015-16 and 2016-17.
  • Blackburn have picked up just one point in their past three league matches against Reading (W0 D1 L2).
  • Reading have won none of their past 10 matches played on Wednesday in all competitions (D4 L6) since a 1-0 win over Leeds in September 2013.
  • Blackburn have won just one of their past 10 away matches in all competitions (D3 L6), a 2-0 win at Millwall in January.
  • José Manuel Gomes has kept two clean sheets in three home Championship games as Reading manager, only one fewer than predecessor Paul Clement managed in 14 games at the Madejski Stadium (3).
  • Seven of Blackburn’s past 11 away Championship goals have been scored via set pieces (two penalties, five free-kicks).