<< Season 1920-21 >>

1920 saw the Southern League first division incorporated into the Football League as Division 3, with Grimsby being relegated from Division 2 to replace Cardiff. This was to become Division 3 South the following season when a corresponding division for northern teams was formed. For classification purposes this season is grouped with Division 3 South rather than Division 3 proper. Reading's first league season proved to be one of their worst, just avoiding having to apply for re-election. This was not helped by off the field turmoil as manager Harry Marshall was sacked and replaced by long serving player Jack Smith. The Reading managership at this period is surrounded by confusion, with some accounts ignoring Marshall and Smith and having Harry Matthews continue as manager until 1922. Certainly, as a board member, Matthews would still have had considerable influence, and might be described, in a modern phrase, as "director of football".

Division 3 (20th)

                        PL  HW HD HL  HF  HA  AW AD AL  AF  AA  PTS     H    A  
 1. Crystal Palace      42  15  4  2  45  17   9  7  5  25  17   59    1-0  0-2 
 2. Southampton         42  14  5  2  46  10   5 11  5  18  18   54    0-4  2-1 
 3. Queens Park Rang    42  14  4  3  38  11   8  5  8  23  21   53    0-0  0-2 
 4. Swindon Town        42  14  5  2  51  17   7  5  9  22  32   52    2-3  0-2 
 5. Swansea Town        42   9 10  2  32  19   9  5  7  24  26   51    1-3  1-2 
 6. Watford             42  14  4  3  40  15   6  4 11  19  29   48    0-0  2-1 
 7. Millwall            42  11  5  5  25   8   7  6  8  17  22   47    0-1  0-2 
 8. Merthyr Town        42  13  5  3  46  20   2 10  9  14  29   45    2-0  0-1 
 9. Luton Town          42  14  6  1  51  15   2  6 13  10  41   44    0-1  0-6 
10. Bristol Rovers      42  15  3  3  51  22   3  4 14  17  35   43    2-1  2-3 
11. Plymouth Arg        42  10  7  4  25  13   1 14  6  10  21   43    1-1  1-1 
12. Portsmouth          42  10  8  3  28  14   2  7 12  18  34   39    1-0  2-2 
13. Grimsby Town*       42  12  5  4  32  16   3  4 14  17  43   39    4-1  0-2 
14. Northampton T       42  11  4  6  32  23   4  4 13  27  52   38    4-0  0-1 
15. Newport County      42   8  5  8  20  23   6  4 11  23  41   37    4-0  1-0 
16. Norwich City        42   9 10  2  31  14   1  6 14  13  39   36    0-1  0-2 
17. Southend Utd        42  13  2  6  32  20   1  6 14  12  41   36    1-1  0-1 
18. Brighton & HA       42  11  6  4  28  20   3  2 16  14  41   36    0-1  2-2 
19. Exeter City         42   9  7  5  27  15   1  8 12  12  39   35    0-1  1-0 
20. READING             42   8  4  9  26  22   4  3 14  16  37   31
21. Brentford           42   7  9  5  27  23   2  3 16  15  44   30    2-1  2-3 
22. Gillingham          42   6  9  6  19  24   2  3 16  15  50   28    1-2  0-1 

    * Grimsby transferred to Division 3 North, 1921

FA Cup

R1     Chelsea1          H  D  0-0
R1(R)  Chelsea1          A  D  2-2 *
R1(2R) Chelsea1          A  L  1-3

       * after extra time