READING FC manager Jose Gomes is happy to admit their clash at Bolton Wanderers tonight is a relegation ‘six-pointer’ (8pm ko).

With snow forecast in the north later today, Royals face a tough battle against both Phil Parkinson’s Trotters as well as the elements.

Reading remain 22nd in the Championship table on 23 points, with Bolton one place below on 22 points.

Both clubs have had their struggles this season with Royals sacking Paul Clement in December then appointing Gomes who has been extremely busy in the January transfer window.

Bolton, meanwhile, have major financial problems and have been unable to pay staff and players at various points.

However, both clubs will put their worries aside for tonight’s vital clash at the University of Bolton Stadium where a win for Royals would lift them out of the bottom three.

Jose Gomes on a six-point clash:

“Yes, I agree with that. Of course, this game will not decide what will happen in the future, but I agree it’s a six-pointer because we are fighting for the same thing. With all respect to the Bolton manager and players, we must play to win.”

What to expect from Bolton: “I expect a similar style to other teams, the nearest is Millwall who are another tough, direct team. They press very high, close down the space and don’t let their opponent play. It will be difficult but we know how they play and what we must do to take the points.”

The challenge Reading FC face to stay in the Championship:

“I love football and I love big challenges. When I accepted the Reading job I knew the great passion of our fans, the pressure we have near the bottom of the table and the quality of players at the club.

“I left my team who were fighting for European competitions to come to a club fighting to stay in the English second division because I believe in these players and this project.

“I believe in the project and to tell you the truth I am really in love with Reading Football Club.”

Reading team news and injuries:

Loan signings Nelson Oliveira, Emiliano Martinez and Matt Miazga could all make their debuts, while Lewis Baker is likely to be in the squad.

Reading Chronicle:

Nelson Oliveira has joined Reading from Norwich City on loan for the rest of the season.

But Liverpool loanee Ovia Ejaria is struggling with a knock, as is Omar Richards.

Paul McShane and Callum Harriott have returned to full training and are also in contention.

Yakou Meite is back in training but tonight’s match could come too soon, while Sam Baldock, John O'Shea, Saeid Ezatolahi, Tom McIntyre and Jordan Obita are definitely ruled out.

Bolton Wanderers news:

Ex-Royals promotion-winning captain Phil Parkinson belies his side have the edge over his former employers going into tonight’s survival clash.

He told the Bolton News: “We have got to make it like a cup tie.

“I don’t think we’re too far away if you look at the West Brom and Bristol games, the way we have been playing, but we have got to step up to the plate. We have to pick a team with character to handle the situation.

“Reading have been one of the bigger spenders when you look at the players they brought in and the wage bill down there. They have invested a lot and a couple of years they were in the play-off final – they might be looking around now and wondering how they ended up in the bottom three.

“Our job is to make sure they are still in there on Tuesday night.”

Reading Chronicle:

Bolton boss, Phil Parkinson.

He added: “They have got some good technical players and have added four or five,” Parkinson said. “Some have already made their debut but it will be interesting how many are used. We pretty much know the system they will play but we’ll be ready for it.

“After the weekend it’s a huge game and we can’t hide away from it.”

Bolton team news and problems in defence:

Goalkeeper Ben Alnwick and defenders David Wheater, Mark Beevers and Marc Wilson are all doubt.

Youngters Luca Connell and Joe Pritchard – who made their full debuts against Bristol City in the 2-1 FA Cup defeat on Friday – are both in the squad.


Reading FC have won only once in six matches in all competitions under Jose Gomes, losing four of them.

But one of those defeats was against Manchester United in the FA Cup and Royals finished on top against Derby County in the league last time, only to lose 2-1.

Their sole success came in a 2-0 home win against Nottingham Forest on January 12.

Bolton, meanwhile, have lost four of their last five fixtures in all competitions including a 6-0 thumping at Nigel Adkins’ Hull City on New Year’s Day.