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Bolton Wanderers v Reading: LIVE

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Live updates with Reading in town to face beleaguered Bolton

Jimmy Phillips takes charge of his first home game of his second stint at the Bolton helm this afternoon
Jimmy Phillips takes charge of his first home game of his second stint at the Bolton helm this afternoon
Harry Trump/Getty Images

Fans of Bolton Wanderers and Reading will feel something has to give at the Macron Stadium this afternoon. The visitors have gone 14 away matches without a clean sheet, while the hosts have conceded in all of their last 14 matches - so you'd expect goals to be extremely likely.

Wanderers are in a dire run of form, without a win in eight games and stranded at the bottom of the Championship some 12 points off safety. They've conceded at least twice in their last six games since Ben Amos got injured, letting in 14 goals in that time - including the six goals at Bristol City last time out two weeks ago.

Reading are also in poor form, having only won two of their last ten, and have fallen away from the early season promise of challenging for the play-offs. However, the hosts haven't beaten Reading in five attempts, including a 7-1 spanking two years ago, cue the Royals being Evens to take all three points this afternoon.

With relegation guaranteed, stand-in manager Jimmy Phillips has had an almost impossible task made even more difficult by injuries to senior players and Jay Spearing made unavailable for selection thanks to the club's financial mess.

This afternoon he hands a first-team debut to full-back Niall Maher and a first start in eons to Stephen Dobbie. It's difficult to know how the side will line-up, but I suspect a diamond formation with Derik Osede sitting behind Josh Vela and Darren Pratley with Dobbie in behind Zach Clough and Kaiyne Woolery. There's also a first place in a match day squad for 17-year-old striker Alex Samizadeh, who is on the bench.

Reading look likely to play in a 4-4-2 with front men Matej Vydra and Yann Kermorgant virtually guaranteed to score, as is Simon Cox from the bench. Chelsea loanee Lucas Piazon could be a handful for debutant Maher, while former White Ali Al-Habsi is the Reading goalkeeper.

We'll bring you all the action as it happens, and you can let us know your thoughts in the Comments section below.

Bolton Wanderers
GK Ben Amos
RB Niall Maher
CB David Wheater
CB Rob Holding
LB Dean Moxey
DM Derik Osede
CM Josh Vela
CM Darren Pratley
AM Stephen Dobbie
CF Zach Clough
CF Kaiyne Woolery
SUBSTITUTES
Alex Samizadeh
Liam Trotter
Neil Danns
Emile Heskey
Lawrie Wilson
Paul Rachubka
Mark Davies

Reading
GK Ali Al-Habsi
RB Chris Gunter
CB Paul McShane
CB Jake Cooper
LB Jonathan Obita
RM Stephen Quinn
CM Oliver Norwood
CM Danny Williams
LM Lucas Piazon
CF Matej Vydra
CF Yann Kermorgant
SUBSTITUTES
Jonathan Bond
Andrew Taylor
George Evans
Anton Ferdinand
Alex Fernandez
Simon Cox
Ola John