Premier League: Fulham 2 Reading 4
By Football News
Relegated Reading eased to a 4-2 win at Fulham to leave Martin Jol's side without a win in six games.
A Hal Robson-Kanu brace had put Reading comfortably ahead but Fulham showed fight to score through Bryan Ruiz. Adam Le Fondre replied for the visitors and Ruiz again notched for the home side.
Jem Karacan scored the final goal of the game to ensure that Reading got the win their performance merited.
John Arne Riise replaced Kieran Richardson for Jol’s men while Damien Duff took Alexander
Kacaniklic’s place in the starting XI. For the visitors, Nigel Adkins chose Robson-Kanu ahead of Nick Blackman.
Robson-Kanu’s inclusion from the start had an instant impact as he was caught by Riise in the area after the ball had gone and referee Neil Swarbrick pointed to the spot with 12 minutes on the clock.
Robson-Kanu calmly slotted the spot-kick past Mark Schwarzer in goal to give Reading the lead.
The early goal opened the game up with Fulham enjoying plenty of possession, creating their first chance after 23 minutes when Dimitar Berbatov’s header almost looped over Alex McCarthy.
Fulham could have drawn level just after the half-hour mark when substitute Hugo Rodallega saw his shot saved by McCarthy from close range.
Despite continued possession and neat football from the home side, Reading held on to their lead until half-time and even had a penalty shout turned down when Danny Guthrie felt he was fouled by Emmanuel Frimpong in the box.
Just a minute into the second half, Karacan came within inches of doubling his side’s lead as his prodded effort was saved well by Schwarzer and rolled wide.
Pavel Pogrebnyak saw his header cleared off the line by Riise before Fulham then had a penalty shout turned down, Berbatov going down after a challenge in the box.
Reading then doubled their lead just after the hour mark with Robson-Kanu grabbing his second, neatly curling the ball past Schwarzer.
Ruiz grabbed a goal back for Fulham after a lovely one-two between the Costa Rican and Rodallega only for Reading’s two-goal lead to be restored after 75 minutes.
Le Fondre latched on to a long ball before rounding the goalkeeper and slotting home.
Fulham hit back barely two minutes later as Ruiz was again on hand to nod home Kacaniklic’s cross to keep the pressure on the visitors.
Rodallega then hit the bar as Fulham pressed for an equaliser but Reading restored their two-goal advantage as Karacan drove home from outside the box.
The result leaves Jol with plenty to ponder as his side's poor form continues, while Reading will be hoping to build on a spirited performance at Craven Cottage as they prepare for life back in the Championship.