Sky Bet Championship team preview: Reading

The Royals are the latest team to go under the radar in our preview summer series

Home ground: Madejski Stadium
Capacity: 24,161
Manager: Steve Clarke
2014/15 league position: 19th
2014/15 top goalscorer: Simon Cox/Glenn Murray (eight in all competitions)

Enduring a Championship season to forget last year, Reading will be hoping to battle for promotion this season as they look to return to the Premier League after a three-year absence.

Inconsistencies in the league let the Royals down as, despite a positive start, Nigel Adkins was sacked in mid-December after a heavy defeat to Birmingham City at St. Andrews.

Former West Bromwich Albion head coach Steve Clarke was quickly appointed as his replacement and quickly turned the Royals' fortunes around as they won seven of his first 14 matches, as well as putting together a good run in the FA Cup, which would eventually see them suffer a cruel semi-final defeat to eventual winners Arsenal at Wembley.

Distracted by their cup exploits, Reading won just two of their final 14 league matches, but delivered enough to comfortably avoid the drop.

Finishing the season on a high with an emphatic victory over play-off hopefuls Derby County, Clarke will be hoping for more consistency from his side as they bid to improve on last year's 19th place finish.   

Charles Watts, Reading FC reporter for offers his thoughts on the Royals’ upcoming campaign to

“Steve Clarke has set his targets high this summer - claiming promotion must be the aim for Reading this season.

“When you consider Royals slumped to a 19th placed finish last time out that may sound like a big ask, especially as they have lost experienced campaigners Adam Federici, Alex Pearce and Jem Karacan in recent weeks.

“But Clarke has recruited well with the likes of Stephen Quinn and McShane coming in, as well as striker Orlando Sa, who arrives boasting a fine recent goalscoring record in Europe.

“And with more new signings expected, optimism is high at Madejski Stadium that the coming season could bring something special.

“Whether that is promotion, it remains to be seen. I would suggest the play-offs could possibly just be out of reach, but a top 10 finish is certainly possible and that would be major improvement on last season.”

Saturday 21 November 2015 – 3pm kick-off at Madejski Stadium
Saturday 2 April 2016 – 3pm kick-off at Macron Stadium

Reading 0-0 Bolton Wanderers – 6/12/2014 (CLICK HERE for highlights)
Bolton Wanderers 1-1 Reading – 3/3/2015 (CLICK HERE for highlights)
Read Time: 3 mins