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Match Previews

Preview: Reading v Crystal Palace

11 March 2016


INTRO
Putting their disappointing league form in 2016 behind them, Palace travel to the Madejski Stadium for the seventh FA Cup quarter-final in their history to face Reading.

The Royals reached this stage of the competition by seeing off Huddersfield Town, Walsall and West Bromwich Albion to get to the last eight, with a 3-1 win against the Baggies 20 days ago the highlight of their run so far.

Brian McDermott's men lie 14th in the Championship table, nine points above the relegation zone and 11 off the play-off places, meaning they could rest some of their key players in Tuesday's 3-1 defeat against Huddersfield.

Last season saw Alan Pardew's former club - whom he managed between 1999 and 2003 - reach the semi-finals but they lost 2-1 to Arsenal after extra-time at Wembley.


OPPOSITION VIEW

Brian McDermott: "It would be fantastic to be able to walk out at Wembley, and that's what it's about. The FA Cup means an awful lot to this football club - to the fans, the players and the owners.

"We want to put on a really good performance and enjoy the occasion, which is really important, and we'll see what the outcome is."


TEAM NEWS

Reading: Paul McShane and Hal Robson-Kanu should return to McDermott's line-up for this tie, but striker Matej Vydra is struggling with a hamstring injury.

That could mean that Anton Ferdinand drops out of the line-up, with the only other long-term injury victim being Aaron Tshibola.

George Evans and Yann Kermorgant are cup tied.

Crystal Palace: Jason Puncheon is nearing a return after six weeks out with a torn hamstring, but Connor Wickham will be missing for the next two games with a thigh strain.

Marouane Chamakh injured himself in a development game on Tuesday night and could be set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines with a torn groin.


STATS
Palace have progressed on all three occasions they've met Reading in the FA Cup - in 1930/31 (after two replays), 1931/32 and 1952/53 (after a replay).

The last five league meetings between these sides in Reading have produced 24 goals.

Palace have only won one of their last 11 league meetings with the Royals (D6, L4).

McDermott's men are unbeaten in all nine of their home games in all competitions in 2016 (W5, D4) and haven't lost at home in the FA Cup since 2012, winning their last five in a row.

Palace have won five of their last six away games in the FA Cup, including each of the last four.


OFFICIALS

Mike Dean takes charge of this game which will be the fourth time he has refereed Palace this season - officiating the defeat to Leicester, the home win against Southampton and the 1-1 draw with Swansea City last month.

Referee: M Dean
Assistants: J Brooks and J Collin
Fourth Official: R East


HEAD-TO-HEAD
Reading winsDrawsPalace wins
League302222
FA Cup033
League Cup000
Total302525


LAST MEETING AT THE MADEJSKI STADIUM

21st April 2012
Reading 2-2 Crystal Palace
Championship

Premier League-bound Reading clinched the Championship title despite being held to a draw by a stubborn Palace side.

Southampton's defeat at Middlesbrough in Saturday's late kick-off handed the league to Brian McDermott's side.

Visitors Palace took a surprise lead when Wilfried Zaha stroked home, but Kaspars Gorkss equalised soon after.

Adam Le Fondre put the Royals ahead after Jason Roberts's red card, before Glenn Murray's superb strike levelled.

TICKETS
Tickets for this game are sold out.

CLICK HERE for the visiting supporters guide for the game tonight. 


TRAVEL
For directions on how to get to the Madejski Stadium, read our away ground guide here.


LIVE COVERAGE
Live commentary of all 90 minutes from the Madejski Stadium will be available on Palace Player. Click HERE to log in or sign up. 

There will also be constant updates throughout the day at @CPFC on Twitter.

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