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Bristol City vs Reading. Sky Bet Championship.

Ashton GateAttendance15,385.

Bristol City 0

    Reading 2

    • N Blackman (9th minute)
    • G McCleary (13th minute)

    Bristol City 0-2 Reading: Two first half goals earn Royals comfortable win

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    Highlights of Reading's 2-0 win over Bristol City in the Championship.

    Early goals from Nick Blackman and Garath McCleary set Reading on a course to a comfortable 2-0 Sky Bet Championship victory over struggling Bristol City at Ashton Gate.

    Striker Blackman netted with a left-footed shot from inside the box on nine minutes, his effort taking a slight deflection to beat Frank Fielding after he cut inside to reach a Danny Williams pass.

    The City goalkeeper should have done better four minutes later when beaten from 30 yards by a low drive from right midfielder McCleary, given time and space to shoot.

    The hosts looked like a team bereft of confidence in the first half and managed just one effort at goal when Jonathan Kodjia's shot from an angle was blocked for a corner.

    At the other end Aden Flint had to make an early last-ditch clearance when Stephen Quinn headed a cross from Matej Vydra back across goal at the far post.

    Reading's midfielders were given far too much space by a City team who are becoming known for being vulnerable when counter-attacked.

    Matej Vydra is tackled by Marlon Pack
    Image: Matej Vydra is tackled by Marlon Pack

    The home crowd took out their anger on referee Stephen Martin and Flint picked up a 26th-minute caution as his frustration boiled over.

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    City boss Steve Cotterill made a half-time substitution, sending on Wes Burns for Liam Moore, a move which meant Luke Ayling switched from wing-back to the right of the back-three.

    And it was not long before a second substitution was made, Bobby Reid replacing Marlon Pack in the centre of midfield.

    It made little difference as Reading remained strong at the back and lively on the break during a second half that was something of a non-event.

    The visitors were content to keep their shape and snuff out a series of predictable attacks from their opponents.

    There were 76 minutes on the clock before City managed a shot on target. Then Kodjia's tame volley was comfortably held by Jonathan Bond.

    Reading would have won more comfortably had Blackman not shot over from a good late chance, but there was still plenty for manager Steve Clarke to enthuse over in a highly competent performance.

    Kodjia hit a post from point-blank range in the dying minutes from a fierce cross-cum-shot by third substitute Kieran Agard, but it would have merely been a consolation.

    Reid's presence added some impetus for the home side, but they have taken only one point from a possible 12 at home since winning promotion last season.

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