“A Chance To Move Away From Danger” – The Real EFL Pundits Preview Reading Vs Charlton Athletic

A monumental clash at the bottom of League One this weekend sees Reading host Charlton Athletic with both sides level on points. A chance to put breathing space between themselves and the bottom four is the reward on offer.

The Addicks suffered a twelfth winless game last time out, with a narrow defeat against promotion chasers Derby County. They encounter Reading at the worst possible time as they continue to build momentum, with another protest against Dai Yongge expected this afternoon.

There finally appears to be some positivity at Charlton Athletic this week following the appointment of Nathan Jones as their new manager. The former Southampton boss has quite the task to turn around a side who are currently in freefall. Michael Appleton lost his job after the last-minute loss to Northampton Town, which proved the final straw in an ever-growing toxic environment in East London.

Reasons to be cheerful in Reading remain at a premium, but those in Berkshire could at least celebrate their surprise midweek victory over high-flyers Stevenage. That made it a fourth game unbeaten, and crucially moved the Royals outside the bottom four. In fact, their form since mid-December has been particularly impressive, losing just one of eleven league outings.

Over to our Real EFL pundits to see how they think this game will go…

Kyle Kennealey

“All the talk will be surrounding Nathan Jones’ arrival, but his opposing number Rubén Sellés has slowly built results and unity in spite of their off-field troubles. He could hardly have faced greater adversity during his short time with the Royals, but it appears the tide is turning with the club united in their aim to avoid successive relegations.

The former Luton Town boss faces quite the task of picking up a Charlton side who are at rock bottom following recent form, and facing fans who just want a side to be proud of. If anyone is able to do so, then the passionate Jones should be able to instil belief into his players that they won’t face the drop to League Two.

This one points towards a draw today, with six of Reading’s last eleven games ending in a stalemate. Similarly, Charlton have picked up a knack for games ending level during their barren run, with five draws from twelve. That would give their new gaffer a good starting point to build from, as he looks to embark on a successful second half of the season. This is a chance to move away from danger for both sides.”

Reading 1-1 Charlton Athletic

Ivan Newsome

“Given the history of the two clubs, this is not a match usually associated with that of a relegation scrap. There is hardly anything to separate the two teams, who both currently sit on 31 points after 30 games. Both have just a one-point gap to the relegation zone and the matchup represents the ideal opportunity to move away from the drop-zone.

It’s a six-pointer in every sense of the word and a game which has severe implications on the future of each club. Reading’s off-the-field troubles are more than well-known yet the players are really rallying on the pitch. Charlton on the other hand have shown little fight in recent weeks which has seen them gradually slip down the table, in turn leading to the sacking of former manager Michael Appleton.

This will be the first game for new manager Nathan Jones, most recently with Southampton in the Premier League, who may be able to get the best out of the current squad. The new manager ‘bounce’ may play its part in the Addicks getting all three points.”

Reading 1-3 Charlton Athletic

Charlie Beeston

“The big talking point of this game is undoubtedly going to be surrounding Charlton and Nathan Jones. The precarious position that they find themselves in is not representative of the squad that they‘ve got. On paper, they should be much higher up the division, but as we know, football is not played on a sheet of paper. The former Luton man has a big job on his hands, and there is no reason why he can‘t succeed in keeping them up.

On Reading, they are a side who have had turmoil thrown their way all season, and January kept that up. Losing members of the squad that were a key part of the first team could have had a majorly detrimental impact. However, four points from their last two games since the window slammed shut proves their level of adaptability even when faced with adversity. Rubén Sellés may have one of the hardest jobs in English football right now, but he is consistently refusing to let it show. With the run they‘re on, don‘t be too shocked to see them take the game to the Addicks.

Reading 1-1 Charlton Athletic

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