Blackburn 2-2 Reading: Charlie Mulgrew's penalty double denies Royals
Jon Dadi Bodvarsson had put Reading in control but Charlie Mulgrew struck two second-half penalties for Blackburn to earn a point.
Last Updated: 22/08/18 11:13pm
Charlie Mulgrew scored two second-half penalties as Blackburn mounted an impressive comeback to draw 2-2 with Reading and preserve their unbeaten start to the Sky Bet Championship season.
Reading looked to be heading for their first win this term after a dominant first half in which Jon Dadi Bodvarsson notched a double of his own with a deft 12th-minute finish and an emphatic second midway through the half - the Royals' first away league goals since March.
They will be aggrieved not to have taken the points and captain Paul McShane was chief culprit, twice committing needless fouls in the area, with Mulgrew tucking away both penalties.
It means Rovers stay unbeaten in the league at home since September 2017. Reading, meanwhile, have still not tasted victory on the road since January, and their difficult start to the season continues.
Blackburn's Kasey Palmer and Bradley Dack missed out from the win at Hull while Joe Rothwell made his first Rovers start as part of two alterations.
Paul Clement welcomed Sone Aluko back in one of three Reading changes from defeat by Bolton.
Rothwell was agonisingly close to marking his full league debut with a spectacular goal when he found space on the edge of the area to fire a thunderous shot towards the top corner, only to see the ball rattle the post.
Rovers would have taken a 10th-minute lead but for a sensational Vito Mannone save, who flung himself to his left to claw away Adam Armstrong's curling effort destined for the top corner.
They were made to pay for profligacy two minutes later when Leandro Bacuna's speculative ball was only partially headed back by Darragh Lenihan and Bodvarsson beat David Raya in a foot race to coolly flick into an empty net.
It settled the Royals, who pounced again in the 25th minute when Yakou Meite's powerful low header was repelled brilliantly by Raya, but Bodvarsson reacted quickest to emphatically hammer home the rebound - his third goal this season.
Rovers were handed a route back into the match six minutes after the break when McShane crudely felled Elliott Bennett in the area. Mulgrew hammered his penalty down the centre to give Blackburn hope.
By now, Rovers were the dominant force but got another helping hand from McShane 14 minutes from time.
This time the captain brought down his opposite number Mulgrew, who dusted himself down to calmly place his penalty into the left corner and out of Mannone's reach.
Blackburn substitute Joe Nuttall headed on to the roof of the net late on, while Marc McNulty flashed one wide for Reading, but neither side could force a winner.
Tony Mowbray: "What I want to talk about is the spirit of the team, the fact at half time in the dressing room, we talked about two or three times last season being a couple of goals down and not losing any of those games, and we know if we get the next goal, we'll ask a lot of questions of them.
"And we sit here having not lost the game from 2-0 down with two of our most attacking players not available before the game and the next two most attacking players hobbling off the pitch. The fans can see this team don't give in."
Paul Clement: "We were the better team by far in the first half. Then, Blackburn's system and style changed which says a lot about what we did in the first half. We found it difficult to stop the supply of balls coming in.
"The two penalties - the first one is clear. The second one I wasn't clear about what it was given for. I've looked back at it on the video; my opinion is it's not a penalty. That's disappointing. McShane said there was no contact. I'm looking at it on the video over and over again. But we'll take the point, we're up and running. It's taken a bit too long to do that - we've had four games."