<< Season 1987-88 >>

Simod Cup A strange season as Reading were relegated back to Division 3, but reached a Wembley final for the first time in their history in the Simod Cup by beating Coventry in a thrilling penalty shoot-out win in the semi-finals. The kick-off was scheduled for 8pm, and then delayed due to crowd congestion. By the time Michael Gilkes scored the winning penalty it was 10:38pm - the latest ever finish to a football match in Britain until a power failure at Kidderminster in 2002. In the final first division Luton took an early lead, but were then run ragged by Michael Gilkes as the Royals ran out 4-1 winners. Martin Hicks became the first, and so far the only, Reading captain to pick up a piece of Wembley silverware.

In the League the sale of Trevor Senior to Watford proved decisive as Reading struggled for goals. Despite one good run, Colin Gordon proved not to be up to the job of replacing Senior. Steve Moran and Billy Whitehurst were signed, the former for a record £250K, but again had only limited success.

Division 2 (22nd, Relegated)

       Leeds Utd         A  D  0-0
       Plymouth Arg      H  L  0-1
       Shrewsbury T      A  W  1-0         Joseph
       Oldham Athletic   H  W  3-0         Gordon, Canoville, Joseph
       AFC Bournemouth   A  L  0-3
       Stoke City        H  L  0-1
       Crystal Palace    H  L  2-3         Taylor, Gilkes (pen)
       Swindon Town      A  L  0-4
       Middlesbrough     A  D  0-0
       West Bromwich A   H  L  1-2         Gilkes
       Birmingham C      A  D  2-2         Gordon 2
       Huddersfield T    H  W  3-2         Gordon, Gilkes, Peters
       Barnsley          A  L  2-5         Gordon 2
       Bradford City     H  D  1-1         Gordon
       Aston Villa       A  L  1-2         Horrix
       Ipswich Town      A  L  1-2         Gordon
       Manchester C      H  L  0-2
       Sheffield Utd     A  L  1-4         Moran
       Blackburn Rov     H  D  0-0
       Millwall          A  L  0-3
       Hull City         A  D  2-2         Taylor, Moran
       Leeds Utd         H  L  0-1
       Stoke City        A  L  2-4         Moran, Tait
       Swindon Town      H  L  0-1
       Crystal Palace    A  W  3-2         Jones, Madden, Beavon
       Plymouth Arg      A  W  3-1         Gilkes (pen), Jones, Moran
       Shrewsbury T      H  W  1-0         Beavon
       Leicester City    H  L  1-2         Williams
       Oldham Athletic   A  L  2-4         Horrix, Moran
       Millwall          H  L  2-3         Tait, Hicks
       Middlesbrough     H  D  0-0
       West Bromwich A   A  W  1-0         Jones
       Huddersfield T    A  W  2-0         Whitehurst 2
       Birmingham C      H  D  1-1         Whitehurst
       Aston Villa       H  L  0-2
       Ipswich Town      H  D  1-1         Whitehurst
       Manchester C      A  L  0-2
       Barnsley          H  W  2-1         Cowling, Whitehurst
       AFC Bournemouth   H  D  0-0
       Bradford City     A  L  0-3
       Leicester City    A  L  0-1
       Sheffield Utd     H  W  2-1         Moran 2
       Blackburn Rov     A  D  1-1         Whitehurst
       Hull City         H  D  0-0

Division 2 Table

                        PL  HW HD HL  HF  HA  AW AD AL  AF  AA  PTS
 1. Millwall            44  15  3  4  45  23  10  4  8  27  29   82
 2. Aston Villa         44   9  7  6  31  21  13  5  4  37  20   78
 3. Middlesbrough+      44  15  4  3  44  16   7  8  7  19  20   78
 4. Bradford City+      44  14  3  5  49  26   8  8  6  25  28   77
 5. Blackburn Rov+      44  12  8  2  38  22   9  6  7  30  30   77
 6. Crystal Palace      44  16  3  3  50  21   6  6 10  36  38   75
 7. Leeds Utd           44  14  4  4  37  18   5  8  9  24  33   69
 8. Ipswich Town        44  14  3  5  38  17   5  6 11  23  35   66
 9. Manchester C        44  11  4  7  50  28   8  4 10  30  32   65
10. Oldham Athletic     44  13  4  5  43  27   5  7 10  29  37   65
11. Stoke City          44  12  6  4  34  22   5  5 12  16  35   62
12. Swindon Town        44  10  7  5  43  25   6  4 12  30  35   59
13. Leicester City      44  12  5  5  35  20   4  6 12  27  41   59
14. Barnsley            44  11  4  7  42  32   4  8 10  19  30   57
15. Hull City           44  10  8  4  32  22   4  7 11  22  38   57
16. Plymouth Arg        44  12  4  6  44  26   4  4 14  21  41   56
17. AFC Bournemouth     44   7  7  8  36  30   6  3 13  20  38   49
18. Shrewsbury T        44   7  8  7  23  22   4  8 10  19  32   49
19. Birmingham C        44   7  9  6  20  24   4  6 12  21  42   48
20. West Bromwich A     44   8  7  7  29  26   4  4 14  21  43   47
21. Sheffield Utd+      44   8  6  8  27  28   5  1 16  18  46   46
22. READING             44   5  7 10  20  25   5  5 12  24  45   42
23. Huddersfield T      44   4  6 12  20  38   2  4 16  21  62   28

    + after play-off

FA Cup

R3     Southampton1      H  L  0-1
League Cup
R2(1)  Chelsea1          H  W  3-1         Gilkes 2, Hicks
R2(2)  Chelsea1          A  L  2-3 [5-4]   Gordon 2
R3     Peterborough U4   A  D  0-0
R3(R)  Peterborough U4   H  W  1-0         Peters
R4     Bradford City2    H  D  0-0
R4(R)  Bradford City2    A  L  0-1
Full Members' Cup
R1     Queens Park Rang1 A  W  3-1         Jones 2, Tait
R2     Oxford Utd1       H  W  1-0         Horrix
R3     Nottingham F1     H  W  2-1 *       Horrix, Beavon
R4     Bradford City2    H  W  2-1 *       Bailie, Horrix
SF     Coventry City1    H  D  1-1 *       Smillie
F      Luton Town1       *  W  4-1         Gilkes, Beavon (pen), Tait, Smillie

       * after extra time
       * after extra time, won 4-3 on penalties
       * at Wembley (att. 61,740)

Top Scorers

                        LG  FA  LC  MC  ALL  PEN  HAT    RATE
 1. Colin Gordon         8   0   2   0   10    0    0   0.370
 2. Steve Moran          7   0   0   0    7    0    0   0.241
 3. Michael Gilkes       4   0   2   1    7    2    0   0.135
 4. Billy Whitehurst     6   0   0   0    6    0    0   0.400
 5. Linden Jones         3   0   0   2    5    0    0   0.132
 6. Dean Horrix          2   0   0   3    5    0    0   0.238
 7. Stuart Beavon        2   0   0   2    4    1    0   0.089
    Mick Tait            2   0   0   2    4    0    0   0.085
 9. Francis Joseph       2   0   0   0    2    0    0   0.154
    Les Taylor           2   0   0   0    2    0    0   0.048
11. Martin Hicks         1   0   1   0    2    0    0   0.036
    Gary Peters          1   0   1   0    2    0    0   0.100
13. Neil Smillie         0   0   0   2    2    0    0   0.062
14. Paul Canoville       1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.125
    David Cowling        1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.100
    David Madden         1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.077
    Jerry Williams       1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.034
18. Colin Bailie         0   0   0   1    1    0    0   0.032
    Line
    Totals              44   0   6  13   63    3    0   1.105

Most Appearances

                        LG    FA    LC    MC    ALL     SUM
 1. Martin Hicks        44     1     5     6     56      56
 2. Michael Gilkes      36+3   1     6     6     49+3    52
 3. Mick Tait           35     1     5     6     47      47
 4. Stuart Beavon       32+2   1     4     6     43+2    45
 5. Steve Francis       34     1     3     6     44      44
 6. Les Taylor          26+4   1     6     4+1   37+5    42
 7. Keith Curle         30     0     4     5     39      39
 8. Linden Jones        27+1   1     6     3     37+1    38
 9. Neil Smillie        22+1   0     3     5+1   30+2    32
10. Colin Bailie        21     1     3     6     31      31
11. Steve Richardson    26+1   0     3     1     30+1    31
12. Steve Moran         24+4   1     0     0     25+4    29
13. Jerry Williams      17+4   0+1   2     3+2   22+7    29
14. Colin Gordon        20     0+1   5     1     26+1    27
15. Dean Horrix          8+5   0     3     5     16+5    21
16. Gary Peters         12+4   0     2+1   0+1   14+6    20
17. Billy Whitehurst    15     0     0     0     15      15
18. Mark White           9+5   0     1     0     10+5    15
19. Gary Westwood       10     0     3     0     13      13
20. David Madden         7+2   1     0     2+1   10+3    13
21. Francis Joseph       5+6   0     1     0+1    6+7    13
22. David Cowling        9+1   0     0     0      9+1    10
23. Paul Canoville       7     0     0+1   0      7+1     8
24. Paul Franklin        3+1   1     1     1      6+1     7
25. Mark Robson          5+2   0     0     0      5+2     7
    Line
    Totals              44     1     6     6     57      57