Reading 3-1 Leicester

Reading made it eight successive league wins to go level with West Ham and boost their automatic promotion hopes.

Mikele Leigertwood sent the Royals on their way with a stunning opener.

Leicester improved after half-time but they wasted a series of chances before Reading extended their advantage with a close-range Jason Roberts strike.

Simon Church added a third with a well-directed header and although Neil Danns pulled a goal back for Leicester in injury time they finished well beaten.

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McDermott 'enjoyed' Reading win

The victory - watched by a near-22,000 crowd - saw Reading climb level with West Ham, who are only narrowly ahead of the Royals on goal difference.

Reading manager Brian McDermott will have high hopes that his side can maintain their promotion challenge and return to the top-flight after a three-season absence.

They started brightly and Foxes keeper Kasper Schmeichel saved from Noel Hunt before Wes Morgan cleared off the line from Hal Robson-Kanu.

Leicester fell behind on the quarter-hour mark when Leigertwood fired the Royals in front with a powerful shot which flew into the top right-hand corner of the net.

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Pearson admits Foxes were 'awful'

The visitors improved after the break when Lloyd Dyer crossed to Danny Drinkwater on the edge of the penalty area, but Drinkwater could not direct his effort on target before David Nugent shot wide after cutting in from the left.

Nugent then headed a Drinkwater corner wide as the Foxes continued to put pressure on Reading.

Reading always looked dangerous on the counter attack and shortly after having appeals for a penalty turned down when Roberts went down in the box, they added a second on 75 minutes.

Hunt charged down the right and picked out Roberts in the box who finished clinically from six yards.

And Hunt was again the provider with a minute left, finding substitute Church to nod home and, although Danns took some of the gloss off the performance with a consolation for Leicester, Reading's promotion push remains firmly on course.

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