<< Season 1996-97 >>

Very much the same again, with Reading struggling but securing safety with a win against Wolves. Mark McGhee's team were challenging for automatic promotion and took the lead late on in the game at Elm Park. However deep into injury time Stuart Lovell scored to put Reading level. The crowd goes wild. Still no final whistle. Up pops Lovell again a couple of minutes later to give Reading a memorable victory. The crowd goes even wilder. And to think I nearly missed the game due to a faulty signal near Oxford.

Also memorable was a 3-1 win over Southampton on a frozen pitch in the FA Cup - Reading's first victory over a top division team in the competition since 1928-29. Remarkably, for the second season running, Reading again used seven different goalkeepers: Mikhailov, Bibbo, Hammond, Wright, Mautone, plus Andy Bernal and Jimmy Quinn as substitute keepers.

Division 1 (18th)

       Sheffield Utd     H  W  1-0         Quinn
       Ipswich Town      A  L  2-5         Nogan, Hunter
       Barnsley          A  L  0-3
       Stoke City        H  D  2-2         Morley (pen), Holsgrove
       Oxford Utd        H  W  2-0         Williams, Morley
       West Bromwich A   A  L  2-3         Morley (pen), Parkinson
       Charlton Ath      A  L  0-1
       Crystal Palace    H  L  1-6         Morley (pen)
       Huddersfield T    A  L  0-1
       Wolverhampton W   A  W  1-0         Lambert
       Grimsby Town      H  D  1-1         Morley (pen)
       Manchester C      H  W  2-0         Nogan 2
       Oldham Athletic   A  D  1-1         Quinn (pen)
       Swindon Town      H  W  2-0         Morley 2 (1 pen)
       Bolton Wand       A  L  1-2         Lambert
       Southend Utd      A  L  1-2         Nogan
       Norwich City      A  D  1-1         Morley
       Queens Park Rang  H  W  2-1         Morley, Nogan
       Birmingham C      H  D  0-0
       Swindon Town      A  L  1-3         Morley
       Tranmere Rov      H  W  2-0         Lambert, Morley
       Port Vale         H  L  0-1
       Bradford City     A  D  0-0
       Portsmouth        H  D  0-0
       West Bromwich A   H  D  2-2         Nogan, Quinn
       Oxford Utd        A  L  1-2         Morley
       Charlton Ath      H  D  2-2         Williams, Lambert
       Birmingham C      A  L  1-4         Holsgrove
       Huddersfield T    H  W  4-1         Morley, McPherson, Hunter, Lovell
       Tranmere Rov      A  D  2-2         Morley 2
       Bolton Wand       H  W  3-2         Morley 3 (1 pen)
       Southend Utd      H  W  3-2         McPherson, Gilkes, Morley
       Port Vale         A  L  0-1
       Norwich City      H  W  2-1         Morley, Adams (og)
       Queens Park Rang  A  W  2-0         Morley, Maddix (og)
       Bradford City     H  D  0-0
       Ipswich Town      H  W  1-0         Lovell
       Portsmouth        A  L  0-1
       Sheffield Utd     A  L  0-2
       Barnsley          H  L  1-2         Morley (pen)
       Stoke City        A  D  1-1         Lambert
       Wolverhampton W   H  W  2-1         Lovell 2
       Grimsby Town      A  L  0-2
       Crystal Palace    A  L  2-3         Bodin, Williams
       Oldham Athletic   H  W  2-0         Roach, Lovell
       Manchester C      A  L  2-3         Meaker, Symons (og)

Division 1 Table

                        PL  HW HD HL  HF  HA  AW AD AL  AF  AA  PTS
 1. Bolton Wand         46  18  4  1  60  20  10 10  3  40  33   98
 2. Barnsley            46  14  4  5  43  19   8 10  5  33  36   80
 3. Wolverhampton W+    46  10  5  8  31  24  12  5  6  37  27   76
 4. Ipswich Town+       46  13  7  3  44  23   7  7  9  24  27   74
 5. Sheffield Utd+      46  13  5  5  46  23   7  8  8  29  29   73
 6. Crystal Palace+     46  10  7  6  39  22   9  7  7  39  26   71
 7. Portsmouth          46  12  4  7  32  24   8  4 11  27  29   68
 8. Port Vale           46   9  9  5  36  28   8  7  8  22  27   67
 9. Queens Park Rang    46  10  5  8  33  25   8  7  8  31  35   66
10. Birmingham C        46  11  7  5  30  18   6  8  9  22  30   66
11. Tranmere Rov        46  10  9  4  42  27   7  5 11  21  29   65
12. Stoke City          46  15  3  5  34  22   3  7 13  17  35   64
13. Norwich City        46   9 10  4  28  18   8  2 13  35  50   63
14. Manchester C        46  12  4  7  34  25   5  6 12  25  35   61
15. Charlton Ath        46  11  8  4  36  28   5  3 15  16  38   59
16. West Bromwich A     46   7  7  9  37  33   7  8  8  31  39   57
17. Oxford Utd          46  14  3  6  44  26   2  6 15  20  42   57
18. READING             46  13  7  3  37  24   2  5 16  21  43   57
19. Swindon Town        46  11  6  6  36  27   4  3 16  16  44   54
20. Huddersfield T      46  10  7  6  28  20   3  8 12  20  41   54
21. Bradford City       46  10  5  8  29  32   2  7 14  18  40   48
22. Grimsby Town        46   7  7  9  31  34   4  6 13  29  47   46
23. Oldham Athletic     46   6  8  9  30  30   4  5 14  21  36   43
24. Southend Utd        46   7  9  7  32  32   1  6 16  10  54   39

    + after play-off

Position Graph

Position Graph

FA Cup

R3     SouthamptonP      H  W  3-1         Lambert, Caskey, Morley (pen)
R4     Portsmouth1       A  L  0-3
League Cup
R2(1)  Wycombe Wand2     H  D  1-1         Quinn
R2(2)  Wycombe Wand2     A  L  0-2 [1-3]

Top Scorers

                        LG  FA  LC  MC  ALL  PEN  HAT    RATE
 1. Trevor Morley       22   1   0   0   23    8    1   0.575
 2. Lee Nogan            6   0   0   0    6    0    0   0.176
 3. James Lambert        5   1   0   0    6    0    0   0.182
 4. Stuart Lovell        5   0   0   0    5    0    0   0.178
 5. Jimmy Quinn          3   0   1   0    4    1    0   0.154
 6. Martin Williams      3   0   0   0    3    0    0   0.091
 7. Paul Holsgrove       2   0   0   0    2    0    0   0.118
    Barry Hunter         2   0   0   0    2    0    0   0.069
    Keith McPherson      2   0   0   0    2    0    0   0.050
10. Paul Bodin           1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.026
    Michael Gilkes       1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.029
    Michael Meaker       1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.040
    Phil Parkinson       1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.038
    Neville Roach        1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.333
15. Darren Caskey        0   1   0   0    1    0    0   0.026
16. Own goals            3   0   0   0    3    0    0   0.060
    Line
    Totals              58   3   1   0   62    9    1   1.240

Most Appearances

                        LG    FA    LC    MC    ALL     SUM
 1. Mick Gooding        40+3   2     2     0     44+3    47
 2. Andy Bernal         41     2     1+1   0     44+1    45
 3. Keith McPherson     39     1     0     0     40      40
 4. Trevor Morley       36+1   2     1     0     39+1    40
 5. Paul Bodin          37     0     2     0     39      39
 6. Darren Caskey       26+9   2     1     0     29+9    38
 7. Michael Gilkes      27+5   2     0+1   0     29+6    35
 8. Lee Nogan           21+11  0     1+1   0     22+12   34
 9. Martin Williams     21+8   2     2     0     25+8    33
10. James Lambert       20+11  2     0     0     22+11   33
11. Barry Hunter        26+1   1     1     0     28+1    29
12. Stuart Lovell       17+9   0+1   1     0     18+10   28
13. Phil Parkinson      15+9   0     1+1   0     16+10   26
14. Jimmy Quinn         10+14  0     1+1   0     11+15   26
15. Michael Meaker      15+10  0     0     0     15+10   25
16. Jeff Hopkins        17+1   0     1     0     18+1    19
17. Martyn Booty        14     2     2     0     18      18
18. Tommy Wright        17     0     0     0     17      17
19. Paul Holsgrove      12+2   2     1     0     15+2    17
20. Steve Mautone       15     0     0     0     15      15
21. Bobby Mikhailov      8     1     2     0     11      11
22. Dariusz Wdowczyk     8     0     2     0     10      10
23. Steve Blatherw'k     6+1   0     0     0      6+1     7
24. Sal Bibbo            5     1     0     0      6       6
25. Kenny Brown          5     0     0     0      5       5
26. Byron Glasgow        2+2   0+1   0     0      2+3     5
27. Steve Swales         3     0     0     0      3       3
28. Neville Roach        2+1   0     0     0      2+1     3
29. David Bass           0+2   0     0     0      0+2     2
30. Nicky Hammond        1     0     0     0      1       1
31. Ben Smith            0+1   0     0     0      0+1     1
    Line
    Totals              46     2     2     0     50      50