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Preview: Swansea City vs. Reading - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Wednesday's Championship clash between Swansea City and Reading, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

A clash between two promotion-chasing teams rounds off the Championship schedule for 2020 as Swansea City host Reading on Wednesday night.

The Swans are currently in second place in the table, three points ahead of the Royals in sixth.

Match preview

Andre Ayew celebrates scoring for Swansea City against Queens Park Rangers on December 26, 2020© Reuters

It is the first time that Swansea are in the top two since the beginning of November, and comes as a result of their 2-0 win at Queens Park Rangers on Boxing Day.

Top scorer Andre Ayew gave them the lead just before half time at the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium before Jamal Lowe grabbed his fourth goal in as many games after the break.

The Swans have now kept a clean sheet in five of their last six matches, with the only exception being their surprise 2-0 defeat to Derby County.

No team in the Championship have conceded fewer goals at home than Steve Cooper's men, who have only lost once at the Liberty Stadium this season – in mid-October to Huddersfield Town.

But despite their league position, Swansea are yet to put together more than two wins in a row in the league this season, last doing so in August 2019. That will be the aim as they host the Royals.

Alfa Semedo celebrates scoring for Reading against Luton Town on December 26, 2020© Reuters

Reading themselves have not achieved consecutive victories since they opened the campaign with seven wins from their first eight games that propelled them to the Championship summit.

As that statistic suggests, they have struggled for consistency since then, but have remained in the promotion picture and were 2-1 winners over Luton Town on Boxing Day.

Tom McIntyre and Alfa Semedo both scored their first goals for the club in the victory as the Royals moved back into the top six following back-to-back defeats to Norwich City and Brentford.

Only three clubs have scored more Championship goals this season than Veljko Paunovic's team and only Norwich have more wins, but they have also conceded the joint-highest number in the top half.

The Berkshire outfit have won just one of their last six away matches and have never taken three points from the Liberty Stadium since it opened in 2005. In fact, Reading have not beaten Swansea in any of their last 13 attempts since a 4-0 victory in September 2008.

Swansea City Championship form: WDWLWW

Reading Championship form: WLWLLW

Team News

Swansea boss Steve Cooper on February 1, 2020© Reuters

Steve Cooper has named the same starting lineup for the last two games, and having won both, may be tempted to keep his side unchanged once again.

If he does decide to switch things up, Kyle Naughton and Korey Smith would seem the most likely plays to slot into the defence and midfield respectively.

Liam Cullen, who was absent for the trip to QPR as he was showing coronavirus symptoms, has now returned a positive test so will miss Wednesday's game.

Michael Olise should come back into Reading's starting XI after being rested against Luton due to a tight hamstring.

John Swift made his return following over three months on the sidelines when he appeared as a substitute on Boxing Day, but he may be used off the bench again as Veljko Paunovic seeks to ease him back into first team football.

The Royals have a hefty injury list that includes captain Liam Moore, but the only player in contention to make a return in South Wales is top scorer Lucas Joao, whom Paunovic has said is in the "final stages" of his recovery.

Swansea City possible starting lineup:
Woodman; Cabango, Bennett, Guehi; Roberts, Fulton, Grimes, Bidwell; Dhanda; Ayew, Lowe

Reading possible starting lineup:
Rafael; Esteves, Holmes, Morrison, McIntyre; Laurent, Rinomhota; Olise, Semedo, Ejaria; Baldock

SM words green background

We say: Swansea City 2-0 Reading

Swansea are really starting to click into gear and should be favourites to claim all three points in this game. Reading have struggled against the teams around them recently, and their depleted squad is unlikely to have enough quality to get anything at the Liberty Stadium.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data


How you voted: Swansea vs Reading

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Reading manager Veljko Paunovic pictured in October 2020
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Reading boss Veljko Paunovic pleased with "very important" win against Luton
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24Wycombe WanderersWycombe2336141635-1915

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