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 Saturday, 14 December, 2002, 17:44 GMT
Reading 0-2 Sheff Utd

Sheffield United destroyed Reading's defensive record as second-half strikes from Jon Harley and Dean Windass pierced the Royals' rearguard for the first time in over 12 hours of football.

Reading goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann had vowed not to shave during a seven-game run of clean sheets.

But he will need to dust off his razor after the in-form Blades ended the home side's impressive unbeaten run.

First left-back Harley, in the second month of a loan spell from Fulham, played a neat one-two with Steve Kabba on the edge of the box and raced through to beat Hahnemann after 59 minutes.

Fightback

Then Windass, in the last match of his loan spell from Middlesbrough was unmarked to head in substitute Peter Ndlovu's cross for the second after 76 minutes.

Sheffield United threatened as early as the fourth minute when Nick Montgomery fired in a shot that was tipped over by Hahnemann, and from the corner central defender Robert Page headed over.

Michael Tonge, who played for the England Under-20s side in midweek, was in the thick of the action and his through-ball to the speedy Steve Kabba produced a saving tackle from Adie Williams.

Reading found opportunities hard to come by, but Nicky Forster drilled in a shot that brought Paddy Kenny into action in the visitors' goal.

The Blades were soon on the offensive and Harley pressed forward for a hot that Hahnemann tipped round the post.

Reading's Andy Hughes headed wide before Forster struck a fierce shot which just missed.

Harley's opener fired a Royals a fightback and Hughes got in another shot which was blocked by Phil Jagielka.


Reading: Hahnemann, Murty, Shorey, Williams, Mackie, Harper, Hughes, Watson, Salako, Forster, Rougier. Subs: Ashdown, Butler, Cureton, Tyson, Newman.

Sheff Utd: Kenny, Jagielka, Harley, Murphy, Page, Ndlovu, Montgomery, McCall, Tonge, Windass, Kabba. Subs: Allison, McGovern, Asaba, Javary, Kozluk.

Referee: M Riley (W Yorkshire)

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
 BBC Five Live's Ron Jones
"Reading's defence finally folded"
 Reading boss Alan Pardew
"I was more disappointed for our fans"
 Blades manager Neil Warnock
"I was purring from the stands"

Saturday's games

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