Reading FC fell to a 1-0 defeat at The Hawthorns as Callum Robinson’s second half goal proved enough for West Brom to grab all three points.

More injuries forced Veljko Paunovic into three changes from teh side that drew 1-1 with Hull City as Andy Yiadom, Danny Drinkwater, and John Swift all missed out with muscular ailments. In their place, 17-year-old Tyrell Ashcroft as well as Dejan Tetek and Liam Moore were brought into the side.

West Brom started on the front foot and had a barrage of half-chances in the opening ten minutes. Robinson and Alex Mowatt each saw long-range efforts saved by Southwood before Robinson couldn’t quite direct a header on target from six yards out.

Reading Chronicle: Liam Moore returned to the side. Image by: JasonPIXLiam Moore returned to the side. Image by: JasonPIX

In-form winger Karlan Grant had the Baggies next opportunity, smashing over the bar from the edge of the box after Reading failed to clear a corner. Jayson Molumby then fired straight at Southwood before Reading gifted West Brom two great chances in a minute. First, Moore was robbed by Hugill who couldn’t quite get a shot or cross off as he charged down on goal before Grant was denied by Southwood’s fingertips after being handed the ball in the box thanks to sloppy passing from the visitors.

Mowatt then shot over on the half-volley as West Brom piled on the pressure in the opening half an hour. Robinson thought he’d given the home side the lead with five minutes to go in the first half but Andy Carroll made a remarkable stop on the line to keep the score level at 0-0. After heading away the initial corner, Carroll fell over and into the net before getting up and diving at the resulting Robinson shot.

Reading finally created their first chance of the half with moments to go as Alen Halilovic turned his marker and played the ball through to Tom Dele-Bashiru who couldn’t direct his shot on target from a tight angle.

Despite dominating the half to the tune of 14 shots to one, West Brom failed to breach Reading’s goal as the two sides went into the break level.

Reading Chronicle: Dele-Bashiru goes for goal. Image by: PADele-Bashiru goes for goal. Image by: PA

A quiet start to the second half saw Reading control slightly more of the ball than they had in the first period, but it was through a Royals attack that West Brom nearly scored the opening goal. Valerien Ismael’s side broke through Robinson but the forward lashed his effort just wide of the far post.

It had been coming from almost the first whistle, but West Brom finally did take the lead in the 62nd minute. Robinson, who had failed to find the net with his first six shots, did indeed score with his seventh. A low cross from Grant picked out West Brom’s number seven at the near post and his deft finish dropped over the line with a touch off the crossbar.

Reading Chronicle: Andy Carroll looks to get involved in the rain at The Hawthorns. Image by: PAAndy Carroll looks to get involved in the rain at The Hawthorns. Image by: PA

Junior Hoilett and George Puscas then replaced Dejan Tetek and Liam Moore as Reading chased an equaliser.

But it was West Brom who continued to look the team more likely to score, Southwood needing to be at his very best to deny Robinson a second when the attacker cut inside and curled one towards the far corner.

Paunovic’s side threw bodies forward in search of a late leveller, but in truth, they never got particularly close as West Brom held on to win 1-0.

READING FC XI: Southwood; Holmes, Moore (75’), Dann, Rahman; Laurent, Tetek (Hoilett 68’), Ashcroft, Halilovic, Dele-Bashiru; Carroll