By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Club Reporter
Saturday's meeting is only the 14th match between the clubs. Of their seven league fixtures against the Royals, United are unbeaten in the last four.
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September 29, 2012 - Reading 2 (Kebe 58, Hunt 62) Newcastle 2 (Ba 59, 83)
Reading (4-4-2): Alex McCarthy; Shaun Cummings, Adrian Mariappa, Kaspars Gorkss, Nicky Shorey; Jimmy Kebe (Garath McCleary 70), Mikele Leigertwood, Jem Karacan, Jobi McAnuff; Noel Hunt (Adam Le Fondre 86), Pavel Pogrebnyak (Jason Roberts 78)
Newcastle (4-4-2): Steve Harper; James Perch, Mike Williamson, Steven Taylor (James Tavernier 56), Davide Santon; Hatem Ben Arfa, Gael Bigirimana (Shane Ferguson 69), Cheick Tiote, Jonas Gutierrez; Papiss Cisse (Shola Ameobi 69) Demba Ba
FULL RECORD v READING
P13 W8 D2 L3 F32 A16
(Last six games - all competitions)
Newcastle - DLLLLW
Reading - WWLWDL
Newcastle (v Norwich, Premier League): Tim Krul; Mathieu Debuchy, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Davide Santon; James Perch, Vurnon Anita (Gael Bigirimana 84); Gabriel Obertan (Yohan Cabaye 57), Sylvain Marveaux, Jonas Gutierrez; Papiss Cisse
Not used: Steve Harper, James Tavernier, Romain Amalfitano, Sammy Ameobi, Nile Ranger
Reading (v West Bromwich Albion, Premier League): Adam Federici; Chris Gunter, Alex Pearce, Adrian Mariappa, Ian Harte; Jobi McAnuff, Jem Karacan (Adam Le Fondre 65), Daniel Carrico (Garath McCleary 46), Danny Guthrie, Jimmy Kebe; Pavel Pogrebnyak
Not used: Stuart Taylor, Shaun Cummings, Sean Morrison, Hope Akpan, Noel Hunt
Newcastle - Striker Shola Ameobi returns to the squad following a one-game ban and defender Steven Taylor could also feature having been ruled out since November with a hamstring injury. Cheick Tiote is away on Africa Cup of Nations duty with Ivory Coast, while Danny Simpson (broken toe), Hatem Ben Arfa (hamstring), Dan Gosling (ankle), Ryan Taylor (knee) and Haris Vuckic (knee) are all out.
Reading - Mikele Leigertwood is back in contention for a starting spot in the Royals' midfield following a recent knock, while winger Hal Robson-Kanu is doubtful with a knee complaint. Striker Jason Roberts (hip) and goalkeeper Alex McCarthy (shoulder) both remain sidelined.
A WORD FROM BOTH CAMPS
Alan Pardew, Newcastle manager: "People talk about six-pointers and all that - it actually is between us two clubs. We can't hide from that. We need to get that distance between us and then strengthen, and then suddenly we would look a lot rosier than we do sitting here today.Defensively we need to tighten up and I think we did that at Norwich, and I thought we did it against Everton too, against a really good side. So we're showing signs of that. But showing signs is not good enough - we've got to deliver and we have to start winning."
Brian McDermott, Reading manager: "Alan has done wonders there, there's no doubt about that - he was manager of the year last season. We all have difficult times in football, that's the nature of what we do for a living. Newcastle is a big club, they've got good players but my concern is our team and our club. I've never been there as a player, never been there as a manager, never been there as a scout, so I'm looking forward to going up there. I know the atmosphere is fantastic there and the ground itself is fantastic."
Andre Marriner (West Midlands): 2012/13 record - 20 games, 31 yellow cards, 0 red cards
PLAYED FOR BOTH TEAMS
Paul Bodin, Kevin Dillon, Les Ferdinand, Danny Guthrie, Shaka Hislop, Mark McGhee, Michael O'Neill, Tommy Wright
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DID YOU KNOW?
Reading have conceded the most goals in the Premier League this season, with 42, and are yet to win a game away from home in the top flight this term.