Reading Rallies Past West Brom in Premier League; Chelsea Wins
A late rally saw Reading beat West Brom 3-2 in English soccer’s Premier League, while Chelsea routed Stoke 4-0 to move into third place.
Jimmy Kebe, Adam Le Fondre and Pavel Pogrebnyak scored in the final eight minutes to give Reading a home win. The comeback prevented the Royals from dropping below Queens Park Rangers, which drew 0-0 with Tottenham, into last place.
“We’re absolutely delighted,” Reading manager Brian McDermott told Sky Sports. “You have to believe in the players. They got us over the line here today.”
Sunderland beat West Ham 3-0, Southampton won 1-0 at Aston Villa and Fulham draw 1-1 with Wigan, while the Everton-Swansea and Norwich-Newcastle games finished goalless.
Reading won for the second time in three games to improve to 16 points, two more than QPR at the bottom of the standings.
Romelu Lukaku scored once in each half to give West Brom a 2-0 lead. Kebe scored with a header in the 82nd minute and Le Fondre tied the score in the 88th with a penalty kick after Kebe was fouled by Jonas Olsson.
Pogrebnyak completed the comeback in the final minute with a shot from about six yards out past goalkeeper Ben Foster.
Chelsea had unlikely help from Jonathan Walters in ending Stoke’s 17-game home unbeaten run in the league.
The Blues took the lead just before halftime when the Stoke defender headed the ball into his own goal as he tried to clear. He did the same again in the 62nd minute to make it 2-0.
Frank Lampard scored with a penalty kick three minutes later and Eden Hazard closed the scoring for the Blues in the 73rd minute.
Walters sealed a miserable day in the final minute as he blasted a penalty kick over the crossbar.
Chelsea has 41 points, one more than Tottenham, which was unable to beat QPR and former manager Harry Redknapp. The draw briefly moved QPR out of last place, but the west London club dropped back down after Reading’s comeback.
Rickie Lambert scored a penalty in the 34th minute to give Southampton its second away win of the season. The loss dropped Aston Villa into the three relegation spots at the bottom of the standings on goal difference below Wigan.
Sebastian Larsson, Adam Johnson and James McLean scored as Sunderland beat West Ham, while Franco Di Santo’s 71st minute goal gave Wigan the draw at Fulham, which got a first-half score from Giorgos Karagounis.
Newcastle is winless in 11 away games this season after finishing 0-0 at Norwich, while Everton was held without a score for the first time in 19 league matches in its goalless home draw against Swansea.
Tomorrow’s fixtures see league leader Manchester United hosts Liverpool while Manchester City visits Arsenal.
To contact the reporter on this story: Bob Bensch in London at firstname.lastname@example.org.