Reading could return to League One action next weekend back in the League One relegation zone as five of the bottom six are in action while the Royals sit out.

After exiting the FA Cup to Eastleigh in round two, while Stevenage face Maidstone United, Reading are not in league action until Saturday, January 13 against Port Vale.

However, there are still five third-tier fixtures as all four of the teams in the relegation zone play, as do Burton Albion immediately above Ruben Selles' side.

Take a look below at the possible permutations for Reading this week.

Reading Chronicle:

Fleetwood Town

The Cod Army, now managed by former Reading midfielder Charlie Adam, currently sit bottom of the league.

They host play-off chasing Derby County on Saturday lunchtime, and a win would take them as up to 21 points.

With the worst goal difference in the league, it is unlikely that they will rise much higher than 23rd before Reading are back in action.

Cheltenham Town

Reading were lucky to escape Whaddon Road with a point last week, drawing 2-2 in an action-packed first-half, but the Robins are on good form.

However, league-leaders Portsmouth will be as tough an ask as they can get.

A win for Darrell Clarke's side will take them level on points with Reading, but with a goal difference 13 worse than the Royals, it is unlikely they can move above them.

Carlisle United & Exeter City

The big one for Reading fans to keep an eye on is the 3 pm kick-off at St James Park between the two teams immediately below the Royals.

The Cumbrians sit on 20 points, while both Reading and the Grecians sit on 23 either side of the relegation zone.

A win for Paul Simpson's visitors will really put the cat amongst the pigeons, while any form of result for Gary Caldwell's team will move Reading back into the bottom four.

Burton Albion

Burton, immediately ahead of Reading and four points clear, host 16th-placed Wycombe Wanderers.

The bottom five could be as much as seven points adrift come Sunday morning, with a gap building between the relegation battlers and those in mid-table.