Birmingham City vs Reading: How to watch, kick off time, team news, predicted lineups and ones to watch
Image from Alex Dodd/gettyimages

The main talking point ahead of Wednesday's fixture is the arrival of new Birmingham City boss, Lee Bowyer with Bowyer resigning from his post at Charlton Athletic and putting pen to paper on a two-and-a-half year deal with Blues.

Saturday's 3-0 defeat against Bristol City at St Andrews proved to be the last straw for Aitor Karanka, with Birmingham City currently occupying 21st place in the EFL Championship, just three points above the drop zone. Blues have a tricky run of fixtures ahead, and club legend Bowyer will look to galvanise the squad ahead of another nail-biting climax to the season.

Reading come into this fixture off the back of a frustrating 1-1 draw against  Nottingham Forest at the City Ground, with the Royals rescuing a late point courtesy of a Yakou Méïté strike. This result saw the Royals remain in fifth place, as Veljko Paunovic's side close in on a play-off place.

  • Team News

Lee Bowyer will have a fully fit squad to select from ahead of Wednesday's fixture, as Veljko Paunovic will be without former Birmingham captain Michael Morrison, John Swift and Lewis Gibson as Ovie Ejaria and Andy Rinomhota are also doubts.

  • Predicted lineups

Birmingham City

Etheridge; Colin, Dean, Roberts, Pedersen, Sanchez, Harper, Gardner, Bela, Hogan, Jutkiewicz

Reading

Cabral, Richards, Moore, Holmes, Yiadom, McIntyre, Laurent, Semedo, Olise, Joao, Meite

  • Ones to watch

Birmingham City- Ivan Sanchez

Arriving from Elche CF in the summer, Ivan Sanchez has provided a bright spark for Blues this season, with his ability on the ball and staggering pace which has caused multiple Championship defences problems this season. If Birmingham are to get themselves out of danger this season, Sanchez will play a pivotal role. 

Reading- Lucas Joao

Lucas Joao has been in fantastic form this season, with the Portuguese striker scoring 21 goals and assisting seven over 31 games. Birmingham's home record has been woeful in recent months, with their last clean sheet at St Andrews coming all the way back in November in a 0-0 draw with Millwall. Joao will look to capitalise on this stat, and push forward in his hunt for the golden boot. 

  • Previous Meetings

In the last meeting between the two sides, Birmingham emerged victorious with a 2-1 win at the Madejski Stadium in December, with Jon Toral bagging a brace. Reading's last win against Birmingham came in a 3-1 win in 2020, days before the U.K went into a national lockdown. 

  • How to watch

The game will be available to watch at 7.45pm on Wednesday on Sky Sports Football.

  • Manager Quotes

Ahead of his first game in charge of Birmingham, Lee Bowyer stated ''My priority is to lift everybody. Not just the players, the staff as well. It seems like it’s not been in a very good place, so I’ve got to lift them.

“I’ve got to try and implement what I want very quickly. The team will improve, I have no doubt about that but we already have a good base to work with.

''We have to pull together as a club to make sure we are in this division next season so the fans can come back and appreciate what we do in this short space of time.”

After Saturday's draw, Reading boss Veljko Paunovic stated ''I’m happy with the attitude, the spirit and the identity we showed.

''We are not happy with the draw. Right now I can’t help it, but it feels like we lost the game. But we remain unbeaten for a fourth game - which is good for the mentality and good for the spirit and good for our momentum.”

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