WILL it be Reading or Bradford who reach the FA Cup Semi-Finals? Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) gives us his view.
Reading v Bradford | Monday 19:45 | BBC1
It’s all a bit of a sham this tie really. Two bad pitches and just two days between this replay and the sides playing in the league. The fact that it’s live on Britain’s premier television channel during prime-time makes me giggle.
But of course there’s a precious place in the FA Cup Semi-Final up for grabs. And that is important. The opening contest nine days before this replay produced just one shot on target as Bradford’s Somme-like pitch caused problems for both sides.
Since then, the Royals have beaten Brighton and lost 4-1 to Watford on Saturday with a shadow team. I fancied Reading in the first game and my opinion has hardened since.
Their home form has been fairly solid this season for a bottom half side. Just four defeats in their opening 14 Madejski matches in the league, they have lost three of the last four since then but would it be fair to say the FA Cup may have been distracting them a little?
Since the initial match, Bradford have had score draws against struggling Coventry and Notts County in the league, and have failed to win any of their last four away matches.
It’s not a match that appeals to me to be honest. As a football fan, and as a punter, but I’m happy to have a small stake on Reading at 10/11 with Coral. They’re a better team, in a higher league, playing at home with a smart, experienced manager in their dugout. That’s enough for me.
Reading v Bradford – Reading to win (10/11 Coral)
Are you looking forward to this game? What will you be backing? Let us know in the comments box below.