Bournemouth maintain unbeaten start with victory at Reading - 02/11/2021
Bournemouth maintain unbeaten start with victory at Reading
AFC Bournemouth made it 15 Championship matches unbeaten this season as they regained their five-point advantage at the top of the Sky Bet Championship with a hard-earned 2-0 win at Reading.
Although the Royals dominated long spells of the first half, Bournemouth went in front in the 43rd minute when leading scorer Dominic Solanke headed home.
They increased their lead just before the hour mark when substitute Jamal Lowe curled in a low shot and held on for victory without any major alarm.
Bournemouth had gone into Saturday’s late game undefeated in 14 league matches, a sequence that had included 10 victories.
Reading’s promising recent run of five wins in six games had ended with successive defeats to Blackpool and Blackburn.
The visitors almost created a clear chance straight from kick-off with a long punt forward finding Jaidon Anthony in acres of space, but the ball bounced too high for him to control and goalkeeper Luke Southwood gathered safely.
Reading replied with a solid spell of pressure, with John Swift clipping over a cross that George Puscas scuffed wide.
Had he scored, though, it would not have counted as Swift had strayed offside in the build-up.
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Reading maintained their upbeat tempo, with Josh Laurent threatening from an ambitious 20-yard drive that flashed just over.
Swift then set up Puscas with a cheeky Rabona-style cross but the Romania striker – without a goal in 19 matches stretching back to last season – was again unable to make decent contact with his attempted finish.
Bournemouth gradually regained some control, with Ryan Christie involved in many of their forays forward, but he was way off target with a long-range effort that sailed well over.
Two minutes before the interval, however, Bournemouth made the breakthrough.
Anthony’s corner from the left to the far post was headed back by Gary Cahill and Solanke nodded in from close range for his 12th goal of the season.
Bournemouth looked sharp after the restart, with Southwood having to catch a dangerous low cross from Christie.
The Royals keeper then had to punch away a well-struck centre from Philip Billing.
But Bournemouth were soon rewarded for their enterprise when sub Lowe – who had been on the pitch for only three minutes – swept home past a helpless Southwood from just outside the home area.
Reading offered little in response and rarely looked capable of reducing the deficit.
Bournemouth saw out the rest of the game comfortably to set a new club record of 15 league games unbeaten from the start of a season.
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