Azeez leveller earns Royals valuable away point – Reading Today Online

Azeez leveller earns Royals valuable away point – Reading Today Online

READING FC picked up a valuable point on the road at promotion pushing Peterborough United after a late leveller from Femi Azeez.

After falling behind in the first-half, a well worked move from Lewis Wing and Femi Azeez led to Sam Smith’s leveller.

That was short lived when the Posh regained the lead just five minutes later with a goal from Ephron Mason-Clark, but the Royals hit back again through Azeez to ensure they took a point.

On the back of a home win against Wigan just three days ago, Ruben Selles opted for just one change which saw Kelvin Ehibhatiomhan replace Sam Smith up front.

Club captain Andy Yiadom was still missing through injury which meant there was another start for Amadou Mbengue at right-back.

The Royals lost out to Peterborough on the opening day of the League One season with a 1-0 defeat.

With a tough test ahead against the side in second position and pushing hard for promotion to the Championship, Reading’s recent upturn in form gave them renewed hope.

Despite having much of the possession throughout the first-half, the Posh were unable to carve open the Royals defence on too many occasions.

Reading had created their own chances with the combination of Harvey Knibbs, Femi Azeez and Kelvin Ehibhatiomhan causing danger.

Their best passage of play saw Azeez feed the ball into Ehibhatiomhan who laid off for Knibbs in the box, but Archie Collins got across to make a crucial tackle to prevent him from getting his shot away.

In an evenly matched opening half an hour, the home side started to find more control at the end of the half.

That dominance led to the opening goal just moments after the hosts had struck the outside of the post through Ephron Mason-Clark.

Reading’s resolve was broken in the 39th minute when defender Josh Knight was left unmarked and his charger run at the back post ended with him planting a header past David Button.

Selles made an early change in the second-half as Smith replaced Ehibhatiomhan to try and inspire the Royals in attack.

The Posh thought they had put themselves two goals to the good when Hector Kyprianou had the ball in the back of the net, but Reading were spared by the linesman’s offside flag,

The next round of changes saw Clinton Mola and Ben Elliott replace Mbengue and Paul Mukairu.

The decision to bring Smith on paid off as he equalised with 30 minutes to play.

An exquisite ball from Lewis Wing set Azeez on his way down the right, he took the ball in his stride and picked out Smith who squeezed the ball in at the near post.

The leveller had seen Reading grow in confidence and they came close to snatching the lead when Azeez, fresh off the back of his stunner against Wigan, smacked the upright from 25 yards out.

Despite enjoying a strong spell in the match, Reading soon found themselves trailing again when Mason-Clark got the ball in the box and put the ball past Button at the near post.

Reading had chances to find another equaliser and Smith came close to pulling off an exceptional bicycle kick which went just over the top.

The visitors did manage to level the game for the second time when the ball was pulled back into the path of Azeez on the penalty area and he fired into the top right hand corner.

That result keeps Reading in 21st spot with vital games against relegation rivals on the horizon either side of the new year.

Peterborough: Bilokapic, Kioso, Knight, Edwards, Burrows, Kyprianou, Collins, Poku, Randall, Mason-Clark, Jones

Subs: Katongo, Crichlow, De Havilland, Clarke-Harris, Ajiboye, Mothersille, Talley

Reading: Button, Mbengue, Holmes, Abbey, Dorsett, Craig, Wing, Mukairu, Knibbs, Azeez, Ehibhatiomhan

Subs: Mola, Elliott, Savage, Smith, Pereira,Bindon, Vickers

Goals: Knight 39’, Smith 63’, Mason-Clark 69’, Azeez 85’

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