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Season 2013-14
Reading (a) U21 Premier League

In association 


Monday 12th August 2013, 7pm

 Madejski Stadium

Conditions: fine

Admission: 4



Newcastle United

  4 - 2





10mins Ugwu shot 0-1

Gael Bigirimana penalty 1-1

Adam Armstrong shot 2-1

Ugwu shot 2-2

Half time: Royals 2 Magpies 2

mins Marcus Maddison shot 2-3

Adam Campbell shot  2-4

Full time: Royals 4 Magpies 2



Despite a valiant effort, United's opening league game of the new season ultimately ended in defeat at the Madejski Stadium on Monday evening. 

Clad in their new third kit of bright yellow shirts paired with black shorts and socks, the Magpies fell behind after ten minutes when home striker Gozie Ugwu curled a fine long-range effort past goalkeeper Jak Alnwick.

Newcastle's reply was almost instant though, Reading defender Jake Cooper adjudged to have blocked a shot in his own area using a hand and United captain Gael Bigirimana dispatching the resultant penalty via a post.

Striker Adam Armstrong then marked his U21 debut by firing Newcastle ahead, taking Adam Campbell's pass and beating Jonathan Henley, only for Ugwu to tie the scores just seconds later with another noteworthy strike.

16 year-old Armstrong was one of two United players making their competitive bow, but fellow new boy Olivier Kemen's first action was curtailed before half time when he limped off to be replaced by Brandon Miele. 

Chances continued to crop up at both ends, Alnwick doing well to block Jake Taylor's shot from distance. A half-chance set up by Miele then saw Armstrong scuff his effort well-placed, before Macaulay Gillesphey blazed over in first half stoppage time. 

Into the second period, United's front pairing of Armstrong and Campbell continued work well together and threaten further goals - both players shooting narrowly wide.

The Royals also looked in the mood to add to their total and after United centre back Remi Streete surrendered possession cheaply, Taylor wasn't far away with a 20 yarder. Streete quickly atoned for that rick though, making a fine block to deny striker Dominic Samuel.

Reading missed a glaring opportunity to regain the lead on 62 minutes, when Taylor found space down the right and crossed for defender Pierce Sweeney to loop his header over from close range - a real let-off for Newcastle.

A second enforced substitution for the visitors saw Miele depart with hamstring trouble as a fitter-looking home side pressed forward in search of a winner.

And after Ugwu almost claimed his hat trick with another ambitious long distance curler after 75 minutes, Reading made it 3-2 with 12 minutes remaining. Alnwick blocked another Ugwu shot but this time was helpless to prevent Lawson D'Ath sweeping home the rebound. 

Steven Logan and Jamie Sterry then both had sight of goal for United in the dying minutes of the contest, the latter testing Henley with a well-struck drive.

The Royals made their undoubted late superiority count further in added time though, Ugwu forcing his way into the area and teeing up Samuel to notch a fourth. 

That sealed defeat for a United side, but they played their full part in an absolutely cracking match that was appreciated by the 656 fans present, including a fair sprinkling of London and Home Counties toon exiles.

Biffa with thanks to GW

Page last updated 06 July, 2014