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Premier League preview: Reading v Stoke

16 August 2012 13:50

Reading play host to Stoke City on Saturday as they resume life in the English Premier League after four seasons in the second tier.

Under the eye of former coach Steve Coppell, Reading spent two years in the top division before suffering second-year syndrome, which led to their relegation.

They spent four seasons in the Championship and despite losing a number of key personnel, manager Brian McDermott guided Reading to promotion.

And in the wake of their promotion, McDermott wasted little time adding reinforcements.

Nottingham Forest duo Chris Gunter and Garath McCleary, Adrian Mariappa (Watford), Pavel Pogrebnyak (Fulham), Danny Guthrie (Newcastle) and Nicky Shorey (West Brom) all made the move to the Madejski Stadium, while number one goalkeeper Adam Federici has committed his long-term.

"I've been delighted with all the new signings since we've brought them to the club," McDermott said.

"They're all good guys who work hard and want to get better. They've got undoubted quality, and add that to their desire you've got a good recipe.

"We're just trying to gel the group, we've got two players for each position which is what I wanted of course."

Reading wrapped up their pre-season preparations with a comfortable 2-0 win against Championship outfit Crystal Palace.

Stoke have also tried to add depth to their squad, signing Michael Kightly form relegated Wolverhampton for an undisclosed fee.

"There is nothing better than to have strong competition in all areas and Michael's arrival gives us that in the wide positions," Stoke manager Tony Pulis said.

"I've long been an admirer of Michael, not only in terms of him being a provider, but also the fact he gets his share of goals."

United States international defender Geoff Cameron has also made the switch, following the departures of Danny Collins (Nottingham Forest) and Jonathan Woodgate (Middlesbrough).

Pulis' side was another of the Premier League contingent to jet out to the States and play three matches against Columbus Crew, Orlando City and Sporting Kansas City.

Saturday's encounter is the first ever Premier League fixture between the two clubs.

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Thursday 23 October

Wednesday 22 October

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Tuesday 21 October

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 8 +15 22
2 8 +10 17
3 8 +14 16
4 8 +4 13
5 8 +1 13
6 8 +3 12
7 8 +2 11
8 8 +1 11
9 8 -1 11
10 8 -1 11
11 8 +0 10
12 8 -8 10
13 8 +0 9
14 8 -1 9
15 8 -2 9
16 8 -3 8
17 8 -7 8
18 8 -6 7
19 8 -9 4
20 8 -12 4

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