Championship
Reading0Middlesbrough2

Reading 0-2 Middlesbrough

Britt Assombalonga
Britt Assombalonga's second-half goal was his seventh in 14 Championship games this season

Middlesbrough earned their first win in six Championship games in a hard-fought game at struggling Reading.

Grant Leadbitter put Garry Monk's side ahead from the penalty spot after Britt Assombalonga was brought down.

The hosts struggled to create chances despite seeing more of the ball, and they were punished when Assombalonga headed in Jonny Howson's cross.

Sone Aluko came closest to pulling a goal back late on, but his volley was turned behind by Darren Randolph.

The result left last season's play-off finalists Reading only two points above the relegation zone, with four defeats in their past five games.

The Royals also lost Tiago Ilori to injury in the first half, the defender taken to hospital following a collision with team-mate Liam Moore, who was able to continue after having a bandage wrapped around his head.

Middlesbrough moved up to 11th in the table, only two points outside the play-off places.

Reading manager Jaap Stam:

On his future as Reading boss: "I like the club very much but if somebody else can make better results and do it better, then (the board) need to make that decision.

"We all work very hard - the team, the staff, the players - but if there's someone out there to do it a lot better, then that decision needs to be made."

On the defeat: "We started very well, in going forward and keeping the pace high. Then we conceded a stupid goal from a penalty.

"You need to come back from that, which is always difficult because you're then facing a team that is dropping deep.

"Boro were very defensive. But when you make two mistakes, concede two goals and don't score ourselves, you lose games."

Middlesbrough manager Garry Monk:

"That was an important win for us. We haven't been in a good period recently and there's been a lot of talk about that.

"To put ourselves back on track, we've got to strike that right balance between defensive and offensive play.

"That's the way to try to build again and we know that, as we get more confident, we have the players to offensively do very well. It was a really good, solid away performance."

Line-ups

Reading

  • 1Mannone
  • 5McShaneBooked at 45mins
  • 20IloriSubstituted forBlackettat 28'minutes
  • 6Moore
  • 2Gunter
  • 4van den BergSubstituted forBarrowat 68'minutes
  • 38KellySubstituted forKermorgantat 77'minutes
  • 14Aluko
  • 10Swift
  • 7Beerens
  • 55Smith

Substitutes

  • 16Edwards
  • 17Barrow
  • 18Kermorgant
  • 22Clement
  • 24Blackett
  • 25Popa
  • 31Jaakkola

Middlesbrough

  • 25Randolph
  • 22Christie
  • 4Ayala
  • 6Gibson
  • 2Fabio
  • 7LeadbitterSubstituted forForshawat 76'minutes
  • 16Howson
  • 19Downing
  • 10BraithwaiteSubstituted forBamfordat 89'minutes
  • 62TavernierSubstituted forJohnsonat 62'minutes
  • 9AssombalongaBooked at 49mins

Substitutes

  • 1Konstantopoulos
  • 3Friend
  • 11Bamford
  • 20Fry
  • 21Johnson
  • 34Forshaw
  • 37Traoré
Referee:
Oliver Langford
Attendance:
17,928

Match Stats

Home TeamReadingAway TeamMiddlesbrough
Possession
Home68%
Away32%
Shots
Home9
Away10
Shots on Target
Home3
Away3
Corners
Home3
Away3
Fouls
Home8
Away11

Live Text

Match ends, Reading 0, Middlesbrough 2.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Reading 0, Middlesbrough 2.

Hand ball by Sam Smith (Reading).

Liam Moore (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Patrick Bamford (Middlesbrough).

Yann Kermorgant (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Fabio (Middlesbrough).

Foul by Yann Kermorgant (Reading).

Jonny Howson (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution

Substitution, Middlesbrough. Patrick Bamford replaces Martin Braithwaite.

Attempt missed. Yann Kermorgant (Reading) left footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the right following a corner.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Darren Randolph.

Attempt missed. Sone Aluko (Reading) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.

Foul by Sone Aluko (Reading).

Martin Braithwaite (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Liam Moore (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Britt Assombalonga (Middlesbrough).

Attempt saved. Modou Barrow (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Yann Kermorgant.

Attempt saved. Marvin Johnson (Middlesbrough) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jonny Howson.

Attempt blocked. Adam Forshaw (Middlesbrough) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Marvin Johnson.

Attempt blocked. Daniel Ayala (Middlesbrough) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Stewart Downing with a cross.

Corner, Middlesbrough. Conceded by Liam Moore.

Attempt blocked. Stewart Downing (Middlesbrough) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Foul by Yann Kermorgant (Reading).

Jonny Howson (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, Reading. Yann Kermorgant replaces Liam Kelly.

Substitution

Substitution, Middlesbrough. Adam Forshaw replaces Grant Leadbitter.

Goal!

Goal! Reading 0, Middlesbrough 2. Britt Assombalonga (Middlesbrough) header from very close range to the high centre of the goal. Assisted by Jonny Howson with a cross.

Attempt blocked. Stewart Downing (Middlesbrough) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Cyrus Christie.

Attempt blocked. Britt Assombalonga (Middlesbrough) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Martin Braithwaite.

Attempt saved. John Swift (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Modou Barrow.

Attempt blocked. Sam Smith (Reading) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Substitution

Substitution, Reading. Modou Barrow replaces Joey van den Berg.

Attempt blocked. John Swift (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Roy Beerens.

Substitution

Substitution, Middlesbrough. Marvin Johnson replaces Marcus Tavernier.

Foul by Sone Aluko (Reading).

Britt Assombalonga (Middlesbrough) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Cyrus Christie.

Sam Smith (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Cyrus Christie (Middlesbrough).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Sheff Utd1410042012830
2Wolves1492325151029
3Cardiff148421810828
4Bristol City146622215724
5Leeds147252214823
6Aston Villa136431913622
7Derby136431914522
8Norwich146441416-222
9Preston145631914521
10Ipswich137062219321
11Nottm Forest147072023-321
12Middlesbrough145541712520
13Fulham144731815319
14QPR144641818018
15Millwall144551614217
16Sheff Wed144551717017
17Hull144462623316
18Brentford143742020016
19Barnsley133461619-313
20Reading133371116-512
21Birmingham13328821-1311
22Burton14248727-2010
23Sunderland141671727-109
24Bolton14149825-177
View full Championship table

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