Reading

V

Madejski Stadium

27/02/2018 | 8:00 pm

Sheffield United

V

Madejski Stadium

27/02/2018 | 8:00 pm

In a sentence: Relegation-threatened Reading welcome Sheffield United to the Madejski Stadium on Tuesday night, in a game that could have a big impact at both ends of the Championship table.

Last time: Sheffield United came out on top when these two played earlier this season, with Paul Coutts and Billy Sharp securing a 2-1 win at Bramall Lane.

This time: The Blades are chasing a play-off spot this season, and they are 11/8 to win in Berkshire, while hosts Reading are 23/10 to pick up all three points and a draw is also 23/10.

You might remember: After losing in last season’s Championship play-off final to Huddersfield, Reading lost club captain Danny Williams to the Yorkshire club.

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Team News

Betting Tips & Predictions

Reading play Sheffield United at the Madejski on Tuesday evening, with the Royals not having the season they expected this term

Both sides are in a relatively poor run of form, with Reading being dragged into a relegation scrap and Sheffield United’s play-off hopes taking a hit in recent weeks.

Something needs to give on Tuesday night, with Stam the manager likely to blink first. Given his side’s bad run and the pressure on his own future at the club, he may opt for a more attacking approach.

However, despite the need for a more offensive approach, Reading do not have the attacking intent that they have had previously – top scorer Mo Barrow has just eight league goals this season.

Despite Sheffield United being in slightly better form than the Royals, it has been their home form that has put them in the top half, with just one defeat at home in 2018.

They will be happy to take a point from this game, and rely on their home form to improve their play-off chances, with a draw priced at 23/10.

With five goals in their last six games for the Blades in all competitions, they are unlikely to create too many goal scoring chances and an under 2.5 goals bet is priced at 4/5.

Match Summary

1

Look out for:

Veteran striker Leon Clarke has formed an excellent partnership with Sharp this season, netting 15 Championship goals this season, alongside the former Leeds United man.

He has had a quiet few weeks in terms of goals, with no goal since New Year’s Day, as the Blades have dropped off, and is 9/2 to break his duck and score first against Reading.

2

We fancy:

With Reading anxiously looking over their shoulders, and Sheffield United seemingly pressing self destruct on their play-off chances, this game will be a tense affair.

The Royals should have enough to avoid the drop come the end of the season, but they cannot afford to lose this game. A draw would benefit them more than their visitors, and 1-1 is priced at 5/1.

3

It’s a long shot, but:

In a disappointing campaign for Reading, in which many of their former Premier League players have failed to shine, criticism has often been directed at them.

Striker Sone Aluko, formerly of Hull City, has struggled in particular to lead the line and score enough goals to keep himself in the team. The striker has just two goals all season, but Stam has turned to him in recent games, and he is 17/2 to score first.

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Written by Feargal Brennan

Feargal Brennan is a long-suffering Everton fan who turned to European football for respite from the Toffees’ struggles. A frequent radio contributor, Feargal writes on football and betting and is an expert in how to cope when you support a forever frustrating football team.