Barclays Premier Reserve League
Tuesday 18 March 2008
Referee: M D Stewart
Full time - 2-1
The referee blows up on an entertaining contest that saw two first-half goals from West Ham United secure victory, although there was a late scare with Dave Kitson's consolation. United go top of the Premier Reserve League, one point ahead of Aston Villa and two in front of tonight's opponents.
90min - GOAL! - Kitson gets a goal back from close range after good play by Sigurdsson on the right wing. The substitute's low cross evaded the home defence and the No9 made no mistake.
90min - Just as the board goes up to indicate three minutes of added time, Kitson heads a half-chance on to the roof of the net.
89min - Sigurdsson plays a nice one-two with Kitson but 'Gala shows he is alert and clears. Another corner to Reading.
89min - Boa Morte is desperate for a goal. He set Hines away and then burst into the box waiting for the cross but Reading were able to cut out the ball in.
86min - A great piece of quick-thinking by Tomkins. Both he and Kitson were on the floor as the ball was pumped forward but the towering defender leant forward on his knees and headed away bravely. That set the hosts on the counter and the move finished with Hines flashing a shot just wide before Collison tried his luck from distance.
85min - The final change for Reading. Gylfi Sigurdsson is on for Cisse.
84min - A half-chance for Hines runs wide. United have a chance of nicking one on the counterattack as Reading are pushing hard to get back in the game and committing men forward.
83min - Spence needs treatment after just getting in a vital challenge on Kitson as the striker was shooting for goal. Reading claimed a foul but the referee has given a goalkick.
81min - Well played Street. Payne was under pressure from a high ball pumped forward but the England youth international keeper claims with aplomb. He has really taken his chance to shine and along with the injured Marek Stech is one of two fine young shot-stoppers doing well at the club under the guidance of Ludek Miklosko.
80min - Hines shows a neat bit of skill to trick Cisse into a foul. The young striker needs treatment. Reid takes the free-kick and it runs through to Federici after being missed by everyone in the area.
77min - Kebe gets a chance to run but is hindered by his own player. West Ham United can build from the back again.
76min - Sonko leaps to meet Convey's cross. Again the header flies wide.
75min - Stanislas comes off and Josh Payne enters the fray. A versatile performer who can play in defence, the substitute is going to sit in a holding midfeld role.
75min - Another Reading corner. Tomkins does superbly to tackle Duberry and get the ball away. It comes in again from Karacan but Street plucks it out of the sky.
74min - James Henry is on for Fae.
73min - De La Cruz makes inroads on the right wing and eventually wins a corner. West Ham United have had to defend plenty of these but do so again to good effect as Tomkins forces Duberry to head wide with close attention.
71min - Collison's tackle on Convey leads to a corner. Street has to be alert to save from Sonko's header but he was not troubled too much.
69min - Boa Morte, Reid and Hines are working hard to get things going again. Reading have dominated the recent exchanges.
67min - Stokes is off and Lee Hales is on. The No6 seems a bit dazed as he departs but he is able to walk off.
65min - Street pulls of a great save to deny Convey after Kitson just managed to beat Tomkins to a flicked header. The goalkeeper was out quickly and spread himself well. From the resulting corner, he comes and collects. We have another stoppage as Stokes requires more treatment.
64min - After two corners, Street is able to claim. It is only a brief respite as Reading come again before Collison wins the ball. He very nearly gets an attack going but for Duberry's block.
62min - Spence throws himself in the way to block a Convey cross. Corner to Reading that Collison clears. The visitors are piling on the pressure.
60min - Stokes is back on. Boa Morte is working very hard in attack and has not allowed Duberry and Sonko to settle. Meanwhile, Spence gets a deep cross in that Collison is just unable to meet.
58min - Reading are working hard to get back in the game. So far the young United defence has stood firm and Street has had little to do. The play has stopped as Stokes is down for treatment.
55min - Well played Widdowson to clear the danger after Kitson had headed on for Fae to burst into the penalty area. The move ends with Kebe blasting over the bar.
53min - Stanislas splits the Reading defence but this time Hines falls foul of the assistant referee's flag.
52min - Stanislas is back on and gets a chance to run at the defence. His cross picks out Tomkins but the defender had strayed offside.
51min - Duberry is cautioned for a strong challenge that leaves Stanislas on the floor. The midfielder is getting treatment to his right leg.
50min - Hines does well on the right but is dispossessed just as he is about to let fly. Reading break again - this is a good game to watch with both teams looking lively.
48min - Stanislas lofts the ball neatly over the Reading defence for Hines but Sonko proves too strong for the forward. A swift Reading counterattack finishes with the visitors earning a corner. Kitson meets it but cannot direct his header on target.
47min - Boa Morte tries his luck from distance after a good ball out from midfield by Stokes. Federici was never troubled.
46min - Neither side has made any changes as West Ham United get us under way.
Half-time - 2-0
45min - We are playing two minutes of added time. Delightful play by Boa Morte and Collison nearly fashions a chance for Stanislas but the angle proves too tight.
44min - This time Collison and then Stanislas clear the danger before Tomkins sets the hosts away. Reading do well to get the ball back and Kitson picks up the ball. The striker moves forward ten yards before shooting but Spence deflects it behind for another corner. Tomkins again rises highest - no mean feat considering the size of most of the Reading team.
42min - Reading try to get going and nearly get an opening when 'Gala slips only for the defender to recover well. Reading keep going though and De La Cruz forces Stokes to concede a corner. Convey takes and when the ball lands at Cisse's feet, 'Gala is in the way to block. Another corner.
40min - GOAL! - Own goal from Sonko. The No5 was put under pressure by Hines and overhit his backpass. With Federici stranded, the ball raced into the corner of the net.
39min - Hines and Reid combine well on the left before the latter switches the play effortlessly to Stanislas on the right. He cuts inside and lets fly but his shot is straight at Federici. Reading counter quickly but Tomkins is alive to it and clears.
38min - Hines chases down a dallying Federici and the goalkeeper's clearance smacks against the striker. It could have gone anywhere but fortunately for the Royals goes behind to safety.
36min - Collison does it again. He breaks up a Reading attack, races forward 60 yards and then finds the strikers with a precise pass. It comes to nothing but the intent is there.
34min - Boa Morte splits the Reading defence with a lovely pass through to Hines. Reid then picks up the play and wins a corner. From it Tomkins connects but cannot steer the ball on target.
33min - Collison is running this in midfield. First he clearing the danger in defence, then he is 50 yards forward slipping in Reid on the left. It is a real captain's performance so far from the 19-year-old. Stokes then gets in on the act with a low shot that just flies wide.
31min - Boa Morte chases down Sonko as the defender looked to build from the back. The No10 for West Ham United is putting in a committed display.
29min - After a half-chance for Sonko from a deep cross, Jimmy Kebe then races away on the left wing and only an outstretched leg from Widdowson averts the danger. Corner to Reading. Convey takes and finds Duberry but his header is off target.
28min - GOAL! - An absolutely tremendous finish from Collison, that owed much to Boa Morte. The Wales Under-21 midfielder burst forward in a central position, fed Boa Morte and received it back in stride as he entered the penalty area. Without hesitating, he looked up and curled the ball into the far corner beyond the outstretched hand of Federici.
25min - Some committed tackles are going in. With the hosts in third and Reading one point ahead in the table, there is plenty to play for. Aston Villa are a further point in front at the top of the table and both they and Reading have played one game fewer than West Ham United.
24min - Bright play from Stanislas pens back the visitors on the right wing. Duberry eventually gets the ball away. A little period of pressure ends finally when Spence over-hits his cross from the right.
22min - Widdowson is cautioned for a late challenge on Kitson. Free-kick to the Royals in a central position, 25 yards from goal. Convey takes it but hits it straight into the wall.
20min - Widdowson fouls Karacan. Free-kick to Reading in an advanced right-wing position. Convey takes it and finds Kitson but his angled header is a good ten yards off target.
19min - Corner to Reading. Convey takes but Tomkins rises highest to beat Kalifa Cisse to the ball and ease home fears.
17min - Reid twice beats Ulises De La Cruz before crossing in again from the left. This time Duberry heads away.
16min - A lovely cross from left-back Joe Widdowson, just back from a loan at Rotherham United, picks out Boa Morte unmarked in front of goal. The Portuguese forward cannot keep his shot on target though and the chance is gone.
15min - Luis Boa Morte does well in a forward position to keep possession despite close Reading attention. He feeds Junior Stanislas on the right wing but Reading recover to snuff out the danger.
13min - Some last-ditch defending again denies Reading the chance to test Street. Jordan Spence, at right-back tonight, this time gets in the timely block.
12min - Stokes win the ball in midfield and a fast break leads to a chance for Zavon Hines to compete with Sonko for possession. However, the visiting No5 is too strong and sees the danger out.
10min - Two superb blocks in quick succession by Tomkins deny Reading a sight of goal after neat hold-up play by Kitson that saw him beat 'Gala and race through.
8min - Both sides are seeing plenty of the ball. Reid again gets good service on the left after bright play by Collison. However, the young winger's cross flies over the bar with Adam Federici in the Reading goal untroubled.
6min - A fast break on the left from Kitson finishes with a fine cross into the box that Bondz 'Gala does well to clear.
5min - Much of the home side's attacking intent has come on the left side with Reid seeing plenty of the ball. The first chance of the match falls to Jack Collison and he fizzes his shot just wide from 25 yards.
4min - James Tomkins does well to shepherd the ball to safety under pressure from Dave Kitson. The United No4 is facing a stern test this evening.
3min - Reading are already looking very organised at the back, with Ibrahima Sonko and Michael Duberry forming an imposing partnership in central defence.
2min - West Ham United instantly try to build on the left wing but Kyel Reid's cross into the box goes straight to the visiting keeper Adam Federici. Within 30 seconds, Reid builds again on the left before the Royals close out the danger.
1min - Dave Kitson and Jem Karacan get us under way.
West Ham United: Adam Street, Jordan Spence, James Tomkins, Bondz 'Gala, Joe Widdowson, Junior Stanislas (Josh Payne 75), Tony Stokes (Lee Hales 67), Jack Collison, Kyel Reid, Luis Boa Morte, Zavon Hines
Subs: Ashley Miller, Josh Payne, Anthony Edgar, Tom Harvey
Reading: Adam Federici, Ulises De La Cruz, Ibrahima Sonko, Michael Duberry, Scott Golbourne, Jimmy Kebe, Kalifa Cisse (Gylfi Sigurdsson 85), Emerse Fae (James Henry 74), Bobby Convey, Dave Kitson, Jem Karacan
Subs: Alex McCarthy, Oliver Bozanic, Aaron Brown