DAVE EDWARDS sent an apologetic message to Reading FC supporters after he was sent off in Royals' 3-0 defeat against Aston Villa last night (Tuesday).

The 32-year-old was handed the first red card of his illustrious career - spanning more than 500 games for club and country - while Royals were level at 0-0.

He picked up a yellow for late challenge on Jack Grealish with 17 minutes on the clock at Villa Park.

Just 13 minutes later, Edwards clattered Birkir Bjarnsson from behind and was dismissed for a second bookable offence.

Royals held on until half time but Villa flew out of the blocks in the second half and immediately took the lead through Bjarnsson.

A Conor Hourihane header and a Scott Hogan tap-in following Vito Mannone's howler saw Steve Bruce's men cruise to a 3-0 victory on the night.

And Edwards said: "I just want to apologise to everyone associated with Reading Football Club for costing us the game last night.

"I'm in the team to tackle and break up play but with my experience I shouldn't be making that second tackle.

"My first red card in 539 appearances and one I would like to forget.

"If I get the chance to push the team forward then rest assured I will like I always try to do every game."

Edwards also gave away an injury time penalty in Royals' 1-0 victory over Queens Park Rangers on Friday night.

On that occasion, Mannone spared Edwards' blushes by palming away Jake Bidwell's spot-kick.

Edwards is the second Royal to be sent off in Paul Clement's first two games as Reading FC boss after Yann Kermorgant was dismissed against QPR.

Royals have seen more red cards than shots on target since Clement took over.