Desperate West Bromwich look to Carew for salvation

Reading 1 West Bromwich Albion 0

Memories of the early season victories over Arsenal and Manchester City, with which West Bromwich Albion greeted their return to the Premier League, are fading fast. After going out of the FA Cup to Reading for the third time in the last six years, Roberto Di Matteo's team face a struggle for top-flight survival in the last four months of the campaign.

Albion have lost 11 of their past 14 matches in all competitions – including the last five in a row in the league – and the manner of their performance here suggested confidence may be ebbing away. For all their territorial domination as they pressed for an equaliser in the second half, Albion looked short on ideas and inspiration.

Eddie Newton, the assistant manager, confirmed after Saturday's match that Albion are still keen to sign John Carew, the Aston Villa striker. "We're interested in him, there's no doubt about that," Newton said. "It's important to get new faces in, but it's also important to get the right people in."

If Albion gave Shane Long too much space for the winning strike here, the striker scoring his seventh goal in the last six games after racing on to Noel Hunt's flicked header, credit also had to go to Reading's in-form marksman, who is said to be a transfer target for West Ham United. Long, who beat Boaz Myhill with a cool finish, was a threat throughout, as were Hunt and the Royals' two speedy wide men, Jimmy Kebe and Jobi McAnuff.

Reading (4-4-2) Federici; Cummings, M Mills, Pearce, Harte; Kebe, Karacan, Leigertwood, McAnuff; Hunt (Robson-Kanu, 86), Long (Church, 75). Substitutes not used McCarthy (gk), Tabb, Ingimarsson, Antonio, Howard.

West Bromwich Albion (4-3-1-2) Myhill; Hurst, Zuiverloon, Scharner (Olsson, h/t), Cech; Barnes (Thomas, 63), Jara, Dorrans; Brunt; Miller (Bednar, 52), Morrison. Substitutes not used Carson (gk), Cox, Shorey, Fortune.

Booked Dorrans. Sent off Olsson (60).

Possession Reading 52% West Brom 48%. Shots on target Reading 5 West Brom 1.

Man of the match Mills. Match rating 6/10.

Referee J Moss (W Yorkshire).

Attendance 13,005.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence