Expecting a cautious affair, many were surprised by the entertaining start to today’s game. The home side looked threatening, with LeFondre forcing Guzan to get a hand to deep cross and Robson-Kanu failing to control a fine cross within the first five minutes of the game.

Seven minutes later, after Lowton found himself booked for a late challenge, Benteke made a great leap to rattle the crossbar – and Reading’s nerves.

Benteke was hard done by, getting none of the decisions he should have done.

The defending was dodgy from both sides and Weimann was presented with a decent chance to open the scoring but scuffed the ball wide.

It was the home side that took the lead in the 31st minute, although the goal was down to Baker who was defending very close to the line and rushed to clear the ball but found it bouncing off his leg and over the line.

Reading fans’ chants of ‘That’s why you’re going down’ proved to be rather premature as their lead lasted only two minutes: Weimann was allowed acres of space on the right and Benteke waited patiently for the pass. A simple cutback allowed the Belgian to smash the ball, which took a deflection off Kelly on its way to the back of the net.

The visiting Villans patiently pressed their advantage and were rewarded in injury time: Lowton head the ball for Bannan, whose deft touch saw the ball rebound for Gabby to thump home, with a little help from Reading’s Taylor.

The second half began as intensely as the first and, ten minutes in, claret and blue hearts sank as the Royals found the net thanks to Hunt who poked the ball in but it was, mercifully, ruled offside.

McDermott’s double substitution – bringing on McCleary and Blackman for Hunt and Akpan – was greeted by boos from the home fans. However, it was Blackman who made an immediate impact, seeming set to level the tie but fired wide. Villa allowed Reading, who were stepping up the gear, too much space and Blackman soon had another scoring opportunity but headed the ball over.

Villa began to attack on the break and Agbonlahor fizzed the ball wide before a well-placed N’Zogbia walloped the ball over the bar.

Reading kept pressing for an equaliser and, well aware of the home side’s recent tally of late goals, the vocal claret and blue army endured a nervy finish to the game.

Lady Luck shone on the visitors and the vital three points allowed them to leapfrog Wigan and take themselves out of the relegation zone, with a chance to bridge that gap at home against bottom side QPR next Saturday.


  1. Like the back line of Lowton, Vlaar, Clark, and Baker.. prolly best back line up we have. Benteke was also in the game today which was good to see, and Gabby as always ran his socks off. Things might turn around if we can get some momentum!

  2. I actually think both sides should be given credit for at least trying to play some half decent football. Villa deserved the points, and they did looked comfortable on the ball. We have to remember however who we were playing. QPR will be a different kettle of fish.
    Lets hope the lads gain some confidence from this. They look a more accomplished side with Vlaar there, we just have to try and keep him fit for the final run in.
    Is this a false dawn? Lets see.Im not holding my breathe.

  3. Good win yesterday but still no clean sheet and this is what we need to do win and keep clean sheets can;t afford to win 2-1 or 3-2 as all these goals against are going to count at the end of season and added to a dire goal difference could be the difference between staying up or going down.It amazes me how some seem to think that if we win four or five games everything is going to be alright it;s not goal difference can work both ways it can mean we stay or go down.
    So am still not confident unless we put wins together in conjunction with clean sheets and remember we still have to play a team whom as already put 8 past us and thats without Manure and L/Pool.So as for the rest in my opinion points on the board and keeping clean sheets will go hand in hand.There is no mistake about that goal difference could be our make or break.

  4. Not the greatest of games & defence seems intent on giving me heart failure but hell of a win when we needed to bounce back so I’ll take that. Thought Sylla seemed decent enough. Fans were well up for the game & in fine voice so playing their part. Need the same level of support at home for QPR now pls. Que sera sera is a load of crap – our fate’s still in our own hands. Fight, fight! VTID.

  5. I think we did really well on Saturday we could still finish near the top 10 would a good end to season that would set us up nicely for next season.

  6. ED i agree and do like your enthusiasm.But may i remind you that our goal difference can still play apart in our fortunes remember we still have to play Liverpool Man U & Chelsea & they put 8 past us & we are minus 26 so god forbid another drubbing like that by anyone of those three teams it will mean a goal difference of 34 & can;t see us winning matches by more than 1-0 or even 2-1.Therefore would have to rely on the other teams in our run in to also lose by large margins.Witch i can;t see happening so therefore can;t afford not to keep clean sheets as well as win by 2-1 or 1-0.

  7. The green shoots of recovery of recovery are definitely there. I’d say it’s 50/50 whether we go down or not. I do think lambert has to be give more time either way. Must say tho I am shocked by lerners decision to gamble the future of the club in order to reduce the wage bill. Massive gamble considering the sky bonanza that’s lined up. Then again he is a banker an look at state of the world economy after some brainless policies the so called experts pursuid. He was meant to be our saviour but he has made some shocking decisions that have plunged OUR club from c/l contenders to relegation contenders in a few short seasons. Thank a lot Mr Lerner. Feel free to take your money to Vegas if you fancy a reckless gamble next time!

  8. Younger lambs are smaller and more tender. Mutton is meat from a sheep over two years old, and has less tender flesh. In general, the darker the colour, the older the animal. Baby lamb meat will be pale pink, while regular lamb is pinkish-red…’^*

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