Amadou Mbengue's second half header ended Coventry City's four match winning run and saw Reading return from the World Cup with a 1-0 win.

Full of injuries, the likes of Liam Moore and Scott Dann, Tom Holmes limped off in the first half to add to Paul Ince's woes. In a positive, Naby Sarr appeared from the bench for his home debut, and first appearance since September.

After four weeks of no action, it took just three minutes for Reading to get fans on the edge of the seat as World Cup star Junior Hoilett beat his man and clipped a cross into the box. Jonathan Panzo managed to head away for a corner, with the visitors keeping the ball. Unfortunately, the fast-paced start hit the breaks as Tom Holmes clashed heads and was forced off with a head injury, taking more than five minutes to sort. Despite settling well, as the away side, it was Reading who had the first effort. The ball fell for Tom Ince in midfield and the top scorer fancied his luck, sending an effort high and wide into Club1871.

Gaining more of a foothold in the middle third of the half, full-back Jake Bidwell went close with a header from Gustavo Hamer’s cross. Trying their luck from a similar area to Ince, Ben Sheaf saw a similar outcome as the fans behind Joe Lumley’s goal had to duck from the wayward effort. Callum O’Hare was the first to truly test Lumley, sending the on-loan keeper low to his right to palm it away from danger. With half-time approaching, the Sky Blues saw two free kicks defended on the edge of the Royals box. Reading’s best chance came in stoppage time, with Yakou Meite flicking a powerful header on target from Ince’s cross, forcing Ben Wilson to tip behind for a corner.

The visitors came flying out of traps in the second half, pinning Reading back and creating a series of good opportunities. Viktor Gyokeres’ header flicked off the post inside two minutes, and O’Hare forced Lumley into a save within the opening 10 minutes. However, massively against the run of play, Reading managed to edge in front. An Ince corner was powerfully nodded in by Mbengue for his first Royals goal. Continuing to press, as they had before the goal, a game of pinball erupted in the hosts’ box as a low delivery was only cleared at the fourth or fifth attempt. Both sides made changes with half hour remaining, and the heavy threat of the visitors began to subside as the match was dwindling toward a one goal victory.

Now an experienced side at running down the clock, the string of chances hindered the Sky Blues' momentum as they failed to threaten, despite six minutes of additional time.

With just six days recovery, Reading travel to Birmingham City on Friday- live on Sky Sports.