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Play Off Final Special – Reading FC Profile

Final League Position – 5th

Stadium: Madjeski Stadium

Average Attendance 2010/11: 17,840

Top Scorer: Shane Long

The Royals will be aiming to return to the top flight after three seasons in the Championship following relegation in 2008.

Manager

Brian McDermott has been at Reading in some capacity for over ten years,  working closely with his opposition manager Brendan Rodgers for many years.

Having taken over from Rodgers at the end of 2009, McDermott has built stability at the club and claimed some Premier League scalps in the cup competitions. His quite yet confident nature and style of play have earned him a great deal of respect across the game.

Season Analysis

After a poor start Reading seemed destined to finish the season in a mid table position, by March the Royals were well off the pace in the league.

A run of eight wins in a row starting in March saw Reading storm up the table and put them in sight of automatic promotion. This levelled out after Easter but allowed the Royals to take their place in the play-offs.

Key Players

Ian Harte has seen it all in a long and varied career and has been almost ever present for Reading this season.

Having played in a Champions League semi-final the experience of the Irishman could be a key factor as the pressure of the occasion tells on both sides.

In attack Shane Long will be the focus for Reading with the Irish striker in fine form scoring 24 goals and having the ability to cause Swansea real problems.

Long has been in fantastic form and this is likely to attract a swathe of interest from Premier league clubs should Reading be defeated on Monday.

Review

Despite being slight underdogs for the final Reading will enter the game full of confidence after seeing off Cardiff in the semi finals.

The game is likely to be decided by one or two key moments and it is just a question of whether it will be Reading or Swansea that dominate these moments.

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