READING FC Under 23s lost 2-0 at Premier League 2 Division 2 leaders Blackburn Rovers.

Royals sat just three points behind table-topping Blackburn before last Friday’s kick-off, but now have more work to do to close the gap in the title race.

Scott Marshall’s visitors threatened first when Ben House shot narrowly wide.

Blackburn’s Charley Doyle fired over at the other end but Reading went close again when Gabe Osho’s header was saved before Tyler Frost missed the target from 18 yards.

Rovers, though, broke the deadlock early in the second half when Dan Butterworth’s deflected effort looped over Liam Driscoll.

The hosts added a second late on through Joe Nuttall when Royals were pushing for an equaliser.

Reading: Driscoll, Howe, Osho (c), Holmes, Medford-Smith, East, Rollinson (Coleman 85), Holsgrove, House, Frost, Loader. Subs not used: Green, Desbois, Shokunbi, Odimayo. Booked: Howe, House.