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Match Previews

Match Preview | Reading (H)

11 August 2023

Match Previews

Match Preview | Reading (H)

11 August 2023

After a cup victory in midweek, The Valiants are back in Skybet League One on Saturday as we welcome Reading to Vale Park in our first home league game of the 2023/24 season.

The Vale return to league action on Saturday after an entertaining 3-2 victory over Fleetwood Town in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday night. A brace from Ethan Chislett and a goal from Josh Thomas secured Vale their first Carabao Cup victory in two seasons, setting up a meeting with League Two outfit Crewe Alexandra in Round Two.

Crosby’s Comments

“It’s a game we're looking forward to against opponents I’ve represented before. A former Premier League team, who when I was there, were being promoted to the Premier League and they were a well-run club under Sir John Madjeski. It’s had issues off the pitch in recent times but they’ve now been taken over and started to recruit players back in”

“They lost their opening game against Peterborough but responded really well on Tuesday against Millwall, and to go to a Championship team and win 4-0 is obviously a really good result, So they’re a team that we look forward to taking on.  A team that we respect and we’re looking forward to a really good game”

Opposition Focus

After being relegated from the Championship last season, The Royals kicked off their League One campaign with a 1-0 defeat at home to Peterborough. However, they did pick up their first win of the season on Tuesday after thrashing Milwall 4-0 in the First Round of the Carabao Cup. What made that win even more impressive was that their squad had an average age of just 21 years old. A brace from Kelvin Ehibhatiomhan and goals from Charlie Savage and Mamadi Camara helped Reading to a famous win.

Reading are managed by former Southampton manager Ruben Selles. The Spaniard took over the reins at Reading after Paul Ince left his role in April following the club’s relegation from The Championship. Selles was at Southampton last season as Assistant Manager and was named as the club’s new manager following the end of Nathan Jones' tenure. Following relegation from the Premier League, Selles was released from his position as manager before going on to join Reading in the summer of 2023.

One to Watch – Andy Carroll

The former England striker joined The Royals in November 2021 on a short-term contract before leaving to join West Brom in January 2022. However, nine months later Carroll returned to Reading where he has since made 31 appearances, scoring nine times.

The 34-year-old broke onto the scene at his town club Newcastle United where he made his debut at the age of 17 in a UEFA Cup win over Palermo, becoming the youngest-ever player to represent Newcastle United in Europe. After making 90 appearances for The Geordies, he joined Liverpool for £35 million in January 2011. However, his time at Anfield was short-lived as he only made 44 appearances, scoring just six times.

In 2012, Carroll joined West Ham on loan, a year later his loan was made permanent after The Hammers signed him for £15 million. Despite picking up a number of injuries during his time in East London, Carroll still managed to play over 100 games and scored 26 goals during his six years at the club. Carroll then went on to re-join Newcastle where he scored once in 37 appearances before joining Reading in 2021.

Andy Carroll has also represented England nine times. He made his debut against France on the 17th November 2010. A year later, he scored his first goal with a low left-footed drive against Ghana in a friendly. Carroll also scored in England’s Euro 2012 campaign when he opened the scoring with a powerful header in The Three Lions’ 3-2 win against Sweden.

Last Time We Met

We have to go all the way back to New Year’s Day in 2002 for the last meeting between the sides in a competitive fixture. The Royals ran out 2-0 winners in the Division Two encounter thanks to a late brace from Jamie Cureton who scored in the 83rd and 87th minute. Cureton proved to be a thorn in Vale’s side that season as he scored another brace in the reverse fixture. Once again, the Royals ran out 2-0 winners thanks to a goal either side of the break from Jamie Cureton.

How to Watch:

 Valiants can purchase tickets in advance for Saturday’s fixture by heading to our ticketing website (  

If you can't join us at Vale Park, we have you covered on iFollow the Vale this weekend as we take on Reading in our first home fixture of the season.

With Audio Match Passes available throughout the UK and Ireland and Video Match Passes available internationally, you can keep up to date with all the action as it happens!

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