A Right Royal Beating

Leicester City 1 : 2 Reading

Leicester crashed to their 3rd league defeat in 4 games at the hands of Reading and whilst City didn’t enjoy much luck, they were ultimately the architects of their own downfall.

Paolo Sousa made two changes from the side that won impressively in the Carling Cup on Tuesday with Oakley and Dyer returning to the starting line up with Moussa and Morrison being left out. City started the more purposeful of the two sides with Dyer going close early on after a good run and Wellens heading wide from a Dyer cross. But it was Reading who scored in the 23rd minute after Moreno failed to deal with a routine clearance , Jimmy Kebe – a problem throughout the match – picked up the loose ball and slipped a pass to Sigurdsson  who was unmarked just eight yards out and he lifted the ball over the advancing Logan and in to the net for a well-taken goal.

This goal didn’t provide the stimulus for a stirring response from City, instead heads went down and City struggled to keep the score at a single goal as Logan was called upon to deal with efforts from Long and McAnuff. In between these saves City had a good penalty shout when Dyer was shoved off the ball by Cummings when he was about to shoot. The second half saw a rejuvenated City emerge from the tunnel and it was no surprise when Lloyd Dyer equalised after a good spell of pressure in the 51st minute. He picked the ball up on the left and went on a mazy run across the area before unleashing an unstoppable left foot shot past Federici from 25 yards. This lifted City who looked the more likely winners as both sides chased a winning goal. Logan saved smartly from Kebe at his near post before Federici denied Dyer with a stunning, full-length save but it was Reading who broke the deadlock. In the 85th minute. A corner on the right was missed by Howard but Matt Mills was right behind him to head the ball past Logan to give Reading the lead and ask questions again of City’s defending.

In the remaining few minutes City made a hatful of chances but were unable to take any of them as Howard had a shot headed off the line by Mills, Federici saved in a goalmouth scramble from Wellens before King had a goal disallowed in injury time as the ref penalised Fryatt for a foul on Mills when it seemed as if they had both fallen to the ground after going for the ball. And so City slipped to another worrying defeat and find themselves just one place off the bottom of the table with a solitary point to their name. Whilst Sousa can claim that his side were unlucky there are clearly problems on the pitch that need to be fixed urgently; a defence that is unrecognisable from the watertight back line of last season, a midfield that concedes ground and possession too easily and a misfiring forward line that simply isn’t clinical enough.

This is City’s worst start to a season for 16 seasons and everyone is growing impatient for results to improve and City to climb the table and Paolo Sousa must be feeling the pressure even though it is only the end of August.

Teams:

City: Logan, Lamey, Berner, Hobbs, Moreno, N’Guessan, Oakley (c), Wellens, Dyer,  Gallagher, Howard
Subs: Ikeme, Kennedy, Neilson, Morrison, Moussa (N’Guessan, 82), King (for Oakley, 63), Fryatt (for Gallagher, 55)

Reading: Federici, Gunnarsson, Pearce, Mills (c), Cummings, Karacan, Howard, Kebe, Sigurdsson, McAnuff, Long
Subs: Hunt, Antonio (for Gunnarsson, 45), Church (for Church, 62), Robson-Kanu, Hamer, Taylor, Davies

Referee: C Webster Attendance: 19,611

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