<< Season 2007-08 >>

Reading's second season in the Premier League ended in relegation as too many of the players who had achieved so much in the previous two years struggled to reproduce their best form, and it proved extremely difficult to bring in replacements of the necessary quality. The departure of Steve Sidwell to Chelsea, in particular, left a gap in the centre of midfield which both exposed the defence and disrupted the passing game that had characterised the team previously. The long-term injury to Glen Little also cut off the right-wing channel that had set up so many goals.

The first half of the season was remarkable primarily for two high-scoring defeats: 4-7 at Portsmouth and 4-6 at Tottenham. On a more positive note, there was also a memorable 3-1 win over Liverpool. The Tottenham defeat sparked a club-record run of eight successive defeats which saw Reading slump into the relegation zone. Most of these looked difficult games on paper, but the defeat at home to relegation rivals Bolton was to prove extremely costly. However this was followed by a run of three wins in four games that looked to have secured safety. Then came the key result of the season as Fulham won at the Madejski to spark a great late run, while Reading were going six games without scoring a goal. On the final day of the season, Reading needed to win at already-relegated Derby and hope that Fulham slipped up at FA Cup finalists Portsmouth. While the Royals finally found their goal touch against the worst team ever to grace the Premier League, Fulham grabbed a late winner to secure safety.

Premier League (18th, Relegated)

       Manchester Utd    A  D  0-0
       Chelsea           H  L  1-2         Bikey
       Everton           H  W  1-0         Hunt
       Bolton Wand       A  L  0-3
       West Ham Utd      H  L  0-3
       Sunderland        A  L  1-2         Kitson
       Wigan Athletic    H  W  2-1         Kitson, Harper
       Portsmouth        A  L  4-7         Rosenior, Kitson, Long, Campbell (og)
       Derby County      H  W  1-0         Doyle
       Blackburn Rov     A  L  2-4         Doyle 2
       Newcastle Utd     H  W  2-1         Kitson, Long
       Fulham            A  L  1-3         Doyle
       Arsenal           H  L  1-3         Shorey
       Manchester C      A  L  1-2         Harper
       Middlesbrough     H  D  1-1         Kitson
       Liverpool         H  W  3-1         Hunt (pen), Doyle, Harper
       Birmingham C      A  D  1-1         Hunt (pen)
       Sunderland        H  W  2-1         Ingimarsson, Hunt
       West Ham Utd      A  D  1-1         Kitson
       Tottenham H       A  L  4-6         Cissé, Ingimarsson, Kitson 2
       Portsmouth        H  L  0-2
       Aston Villa       A  L  1-3         Harper
       Manchester Utd    H  L  0-2
       Chelsea           A  L  0-1
       Bolton Wand       H  L  0-2
       Everton           A  L  0-1
       Aston Villa       H  L  1-2         Shorey
       Middlesbrough     A  W  1-0         Harper
       Manchester C      H  W  2-0         Long, Kitson
       Liverpool         A  L  1-2         Matějovský
       Birmingham C      H  W  2-1         Bikey 2
       Blackburn Rov     H  D  0-0
       Newcastle Utd     A  L  0-3
       Fulham            H  L  0-2
       Arsenal           A  L  0-2
       Wigan Athletic    A  D  0-0
       Tottenham H       H  L  0-1
       Derby County      A  W  4-0         Harper, Kitson, Doyle, Lita

Premier League Table

                        PL  HW HD HL  HF  HA  AW AD AL  AF  AA  PTS
 1. Manchester Utd      38  17  1  1  47   7  10  5  4  33  15   87
 2. Chelsea             38  12  7  0  36  13  13  3  3  29  13   85
 3. Arsenal             38  14  5  0  37  11  10  6  3  37  20   83
 4. Liverpool           38  12  6  1  43  13   9  7  3  24  15   76
 5. Everton             38  11  4  4  34  17   8  4  7  21  16   65
 6. Aston Villa         38  10  3  6  34  22   6  9  4  37  29   60
 7. Blackburn Rov       38   8  7  4  26  19   7  6  6  24  29   58
 8. Portsmouth          38   7  8  4  24  14   9  1  9  24  26   57
 9. Manchester C        38  11  4  4  28  20   4  6  9  17  33   55
10. West Ham Utd        38   7  7  5  24  24   6  3 10  18  26   49
11. Tottenham H         38   8  5  6  46  34   3  8  8  20  27   46
12. Newcastle Utd       38   8  5  6  25  26   3  5 11  20  39   43
13. Middlesbrough       38   7  5  7  27  23   3  7  9  16  30   42
14. Wigan Athletic      38   8  5  6  21  17   2  5 12  13  34   40
15. Sunderland          38   9  3  7  23  21   2  3 14  13  38   39
16. Bolton Wand         38   7  5  7  23  18   2  5 12  13  36   37
17. Fulham              38   5  5  9  22  31   3  7  9  16  29   36
18. READING             38   8  2  9  19  25   2  4 13  22  41   36
19. Birmingham C        38   6  8  5  30  23   2  3 14  16  39   35
20. Derby County        38   1  5 13  12  43   0  3 16   8  46   11

Position Graph

Position Graph

FA Cup

R3     Tottenham HP      A  D  2-2         Hunt 2
R3(R)  Tottenham HP      H  L  0-1
League Cup
R2     Swansea City1     A  W  1-0 *       Lita
R3     LiverpoolP        H  L  2-4         Convey, Halls

       * after extra time
Peace Cup
R1(A)  River Plate       *  L  0-1
R1(B)  Olympique Lyon    *  W  1-0         Cox
R1(C)  Shimizu S-Pulse   *  W  1-0         Gunnarsson

       * all matches held in South Korea
Peace Cup Group A Table
                        PL   W  D  L  GF  GA  PTS
 1. Bolton Wand          3   2  1  0   5   2    7
 2. Chivas Guadalajara   3   1  1  1   5   2    4
 3. Seongnam Ilhwa       3   0  3  0   1   1    3
 4. Racing Santander     3   0  1  2   1   7    1
Peace Cup Group B Table
                        PL   W  D  L  GF  GA  PTS
 1. Olympique Lyon*      3   2  0  1   5   2    6
 2. READING              3   2  0  1   2   1    6
 3. River Plate          3   2  0  1   3   3    6
 4. Shimizu S-Pulse      3   0  0  3   0   4    0

    * Lyons beat Bolton 1-0 in final

Top Scorers

                        LG  FA  LC  MC  ALL  PEN  HAT    RATE
 1. Dave Kitson         10   0   0   0   10    0    0   0.278
 2. Kevin Doyle          6   0   0   0    6    0    0   0.167
    James Harper         6   0   0   0    6    0    0   0.146
 4. Stephen Hunt         4   2   0   0    6    2    0   0.150
 5. André Bikey          3   0   0   0    3    0    0   0.125
    Shane Long           3   0   0   0    3    0    0   0.094
 7. Ívar Ingimarsson     2   0   0   0    2    0    0   0.057
    Nicky Shorey         2   0   0   0    2    0    0   0.053
 9. Leroy Lita           1   0   1   0    2    0    0   0.111
10. Kalifa Cissé         1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.040
    Marek Matějovský     1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.071
    Liam Rosenior        1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.053
13. Bobby Convey         0   0   1   0    1    0    0   0.042
    John Halls           0   0   1   0    1    0    0   0.500
15. Own goals            1   0   0   0    1    0    0   0.024
    Line
    Totals              41   2   3   0   46    2    0   1.095

Most Appearances

                        LG    FA    LC    MC    ALL     SUM
 1. James Harper        38     1     2     0     41      41
 2. Stephen Hunt        37     1+1   0+1   0     38+2    40
 3. Marcus Hahnemann    38     0     0     0     38      38
 4. Nicky Shorey        36     1     1     0     38      38
 5. Kevin Doyle         34+2   0     0     0     34+2    36
 6. Dave Kitson         28+6   0     1+1   0     29+7    36
 7. Ívar Ingimarsson    33+1   1     0     0     34+1    35
 8. Shane Long           7+22  2     1     0     10+22   32
 9. Graeme Murty        28     0     0     0     28      28
10. Kalifa Cissé        11+11  2     1     0     14+11   25
11. André Bikey         14+8   1     1     0     16+8    24
12. Bobby Convey        12+8   2     2     0     16+8    24
13. Bryn Gunnarsson     18+2   0     0     0     18+2    20
14. Liam Rosenior       15+2   2     0     0     17+2    19
15. Leroy Lita          10+4   2     2     0     14+4    18
16. John Oster          12+6   0     0     0     12+6    18
17. Ibrahima Sonko      15+1   0     0     0     15+1    16
18. Michael Duberry     12+1   1     2     0     15+1    16
19. Marek Matějovský    10+4   0     0     0     10+4    14
20. Emerse Faé           3+5   1     2     0      6+5    11
21. Ulises d.l.Cruz      3+3   2     2     0      7+3    10
22. Jimmy Kébé           1+4   0     0     0      1+4     5
23. Adam Federici        0     2     2     0      4       4
24. Seol Ki-Hyeon        2+1   0     0     0      2+1     3
25. Alex Pearce          0     1+1   0+1   0      1+2     3
26. John Halls           0     0     2     0      2       2
27. Scott Golbourne      1     0     0+1   0      1+1     2
28. Glen Little          0+2   0     0     0      0+2     2
29. Simon Cox            0     0+1   0+1   0      0+2     2
30. Sam Sodje            0     0     1     0      1       1
31. James Henry          0     0     0+1   0      0+1     1
    Line
    Totals              38     2     2     0     42      42