Championship
Reading0Newcastle0

Reading 0-0 Newcastle United

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez (left) and Reading counterpart Jaap Stam
Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez (left) had a frustrating evening watching his side held to their first goalless draw of the campaign

Newcastle United saw their Championship lead cut to three points as they were held to a draw in a cagey match against fellow promotion hopefuls Reading.

The Magpies created the better chances but were restricted to long-range shots in the first half against a cautious Royals side who defended in numbers.

Matt Ritchie struck the post with a low shot for the visitors before the break.

But Reading almost earned victory in second-half injury time when Garath McCleary's attempt clipped the bar.

Newcastle, who are now only one win above Brighton following the Seagulls' victory over Rotherham, were unable to add to their 13 away league successes against a resolute Royals team boasting the division's best home record.

Jaap Stam's side, who remain fifth, had only lost twice at the Madejski Stadium this season and had won nine of their previous 11 home Championship games.

They were under pressure in the first period, but the visitors could only manage speculative attempts through Yoan Gouffran and Jonjo Shelvey until Ritchie's well-directed 18-yard strike came back off the inside of the right-hand post.

Yann Kermorgant had a volley saved by away keeper Karl Darlow after the break, an effort which was Reading's only shot on target.

But they could so easily have earned a win which would have taken them above Leeds United and into fourth had McCleary's dinked attempt to cross the ball in been a fraction lower.

Reading manager Jaap Stam told BBC Radio Berkshire:

"If you play big games against sides like this at this stage of the season, it's important not to lose games.

"It's also important to create a few chances and perhaps the only thing we can say that's disappointing is we didn't score one.

"I think sometimes we were too eager to go forward in the first half and we were warned a couple of times with the chances Newcastle had on the break.

"But we spoke about it at the half-time and in the second half we did what we needed to to be patient and not let them run.

"We got the opportunities but we couldn't score, which was a pity. But, playing against a team like this, it's not a shame when you come away with a point."

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez told BBC Newcastle:

"The main thing for us is we have to be happy to take seven points from the past three away games.

"Today was a pity as I think in the first half, we had so many clear chances that there could've been three points there.

"Our fans travelling away will be happy with these seven points, but still it could've been more. But, still it's a good performance these past three games.

"The main thing is we've shown we're strong enough and we can come to grounds where the home team is playing well and has all the possession and we still have it in us to win games."

Line-ups

Reading

  • 26Al Habsi
  • 2GunterBooked at 90mins
  • 5McShane
  • 16MooreSubstituted forObitaat 50'minutes
  • 24Blackett
  • 38KellySubstituted forWilliamsat 45'minutes
  • 4van den Berg
  • 50Grabban
  • 54Mutch
  • 12McCleary
  • 18Kermorgant

Substitutes

  • 6Evans
  • 7Beerens
  • 8Swift
  • 11Obita
  • 23Williams
  • 25Popa
  • 31Jaakkola

Newcastle

  • 26Darlow
  • 27Gámez
  • 6Lascelles
  • 2Clark
  • 3Dummett
  • 11Ritchie
  • 12Shelvey
  • 4ColbackSubstituted forDiaméat 88'minutes
  • 20GouffranSubstituted forAtsuat 69'minutes
  • 17Pérez
  • 33MurphySubstituted forGayleat 75'minutes

Substitutes

  • 5Hanley
  • 8Anita
  • 9Gayle
  • 15Diamé
  • 18Mbemba
  • 21Elliot
  • 30Atsu
Referee:
Andy Davies
Attendance:
23,121

Match Stats

Home TeamReadingAway TeamNewcastle
Possession
Home70%
Away30%
Shots
Home6
Away13
Shots on Target
Home1
Away5
Corners
Home7
Away5
Fouls
Home8
Away6

Live Text

Match ends, Reading 0, Newcastle United 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Reading 0, Newcastle United 0.

Garath McCleary (Reading) hits the bar with a left footed shot from the left side of the box. Assisted by Danny Williams.

Attempt missed. Jonjo Shelvey (Newcastle United) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Matt Ritchie with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Danny Williams.

Attempt blocked. Matt Ritchie (Newcastle United) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Christian Atsu.

Booking

Chris Gunter (Reading) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Chris Gunter (Reading).

Christian Atsu (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Newcastle United. Mohamed Diamé replaces Jack Colback.

Foul by Chris Gunter (Reading).

Paul Dummett (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Joey van den Berg.

Foul by Tyler Blackett (Reading).

Jamaal Lascelles (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Paul Dummett.

Substitution

Substitution, Newcastle United. Dwight Gayle replaces Daryl Murphy.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Ciaran Clark.

Attempt blocked. Garath McCleary (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Jordon Mutch.

Joey van den Berg (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Matt Ritchie (Newcastle United).

Attempt saved. Daryl Murphy (Newcastle United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Paul Dummett with a cross.

Substitution

Substitution, Newcastle United. Christian Atsu replaces Yoan Gouffran because of an injury.

Foul by Joey van den Berg (Reading).

Ayoze Pérez (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match (Reading).

Attempt missed. Daryl Murphy (Newcastle United) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Ayoze Pérez with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Lewis Grabban.

Offside, Newcastle United. Jonjo Shelvey tries a through ball, but Ayoze Pérez is caught offside.

Foul by Jordon Mutch (Reading).

Jack Colback (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Yann Kermorgant (Reading).

Ciaran Clark (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Reading. Jordan Obita replaces Liam Moore because of an injury.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Liam Moore (Reading) because of an injury.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Jamaal Lascelles.

Attempt saved. Yann Kermorgant (Reading) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Joey van den Berg with a cross.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Ciaran Clark.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Newcastle36245769294077
2Brighton36228660312974
3Huddersfield3521594639768
4Leeds362051150361465
5Reading36197104946364
6Sheff Wed361881048351362
7Fulham351512860411957
8Norwich36158136154753
9Preston361411114845353
10Derby361410123933652
11Barnsley36148145452250
12Brentford35138145451347
13Cardiff36138154952-347
14QPR36137164150-946
15Aston Villa361112133539-445
16Ipswich361014123643-744
17Birmingham361110153753-1643
18Nottm Forest36117185161-1040
19Burton36911163548-1338
20Blackburn35910164051-1137
21Wolves3499164046-636
22Bristol City3698194553-835
23Wigan36810183141-1034
24Rotherham3645273281-4917
View full Championship table

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