Barnsley 0-4 Reading: Sunday Mirror match report
Published 21:30 17/03/12 By Mirror Football
Reading maintained their promotion charge with their ninth win in 10 league matches.
Brian McDermott’s side had won eight games on the trot before drawing at Doncaster in midweek, but two goals in two minutes at the start of the second half got them back on the winning trail before their dominance was confirmed with two further efforts.
Jobi McAnuff crashed home a low shot in the 47th minute and Jem Karacan hit a second two minutes later.
Karacan added a brilliant third while Jason Roberts struck a last-gasp fourth.
Reading striker Noel Hunt forced a fine save from Barnsley goalkeeper Luke Steele after just 45 seconds and 10 minutes later the Tykes’ Danny Rose was a fraction wide with an audacious 30-yard lob.
After the break Roberts laid the ball off for McAnuff on the edge of the area and the midfielder arrowed a low shot into the corner.
Two minutes later the home defence failed to clear the ball in the area and Karacan pounced to lash it home from 12 yards.
Roberts then pulled his left-footed shot off target when poised to add another from inside the area in the 57th minute, but the Royals were not to be denied a third goal thanks to Karacan’s super finish.
Ian Harte supplied the free-kick, Hunt teed the ball up on the edge of the box and Karacan fired an unstoppable shot into the top corner.
Craig Davies and Frank Nouble went close with long-range efforts for Barnsley, but Roberts converted a fourth goal from Alex Pearce’s pass.
McDermott said: “To come to a tough place like Barnsley and win 4-0, I can’t ask any more of my players.
“The first goal was really important and it was just as important to get the second as soon as possible after.
“It was a terrific finish for the first goal and the third goal was a smasher.”
Barnsley boss Keith Hill says his side are in a relegation fight after they failed to win in six matches.
He said: “When you lose two early goals in the second half the players’ confidence goes.
“We are in poor form. In fact we are in relegation form.”