Reading manager Mark Bowen has said squad players could be in line to feature this weekend as the Royals take on Blackpool in the FA Cup third round at the Madejski Stadium.
It will be Reading’s fourth game in eight days, and with the recent hectic schedule, it is expected that certain players will be rested.
Speaking to the club website, Mark Bowen said that he will analyse the squad to see who came out of the Fulham game in a good physical condition, but also said it is likely that fringe players will be involved as well.
QUIZ: Can you remember Reading’s last fifteen league positions?
“After the workload that they have put in, it is probably a good time to get some young players involved and those lads who have trained hard and who are desperate for game-time.”
Bowen also talked about the importance of the competition for the club, admitting that he is excited at its return.
“It [the FA Cup] should get you excited. I’m old fashioned like that – it should get the juices flowing in everybody.”
“I appreciate that the fans want a cup run as well, and I’ll try to give them that,” the Welshman added.
Reading will be looking to improve on their effort in the cup last season. The Royals failed to progress past the third round, albeit coming up against Manchester United at Old Trafford. The club made the semi finals back in 2014-15.
Saturday’s game will be the first meeting between Reading and Blackpool in over four years. The Royals are unbeaten against the Seasiders in three matches.
Reading are on an excellent run of six games without defeat, including four straight wins in the league. They will be looking to add to that this Saturday against a Blackpool side who are out of sorts.
The Seasiders have lost three of their last five games, with their last win coming at the start of December.
However, Bowen cannot take the opposition lightly. With a large squad to choose from and fatigue setting in, it looks almost certain that fringe players will return to the starting XI.