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Kick off 20:00 (UK)

12 December 2023 Venue Select Car Leasing Stadium Attendance

Kick off 20:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

PREVIEW Reading v Oxford United

A full guide to tonight's Thames Valley Derby

12 December 2023

A local rivalry is revived as Oxford United head for Reading this evening in Sky Bet League 1 (8pm)

It's a rivalry that has rarely featured for 20 years but the fans in the sold out away end have been looking forward to a return to the Royals all season.

Stephan Negru is the latest player to join the injured list. The defender damaged a hamstring in the Bristol Street Motors Trophy game at Forest Green and will be out for five to six weeks, joining Marcus Browne, Kyle Edwards and Sam Long in the treatment room.

Putting rivalry to one side, midfielder Cameron Brannagan sees tonight's game as a chance for the U's to put things right after defeat at Peterborough on Saturday.

"I hate losing at anything" he told iFollow "and we owe the fans a better performance after Saturday. We were hurt by that performance but we know what we have to do and the only ones who can put it right are the staff and players. When we go over that white line at Reading we will be ready to show what we are really about.

"The fans have been making it clear what the game means to them. I'm not from the area so didn't grow up knowing about it but it means a lot to the supporters and we know there will be 3,000 of them there making plenty of noise and getting behind us. There will be a great atmosphere so we are rubbing our hands and can't wait to get out there and play."

You can see more from Cameron below plus a full interview with Des Buckingham in iFollow right now where you can also watch the whole game LIVE.

Reading boss Rubén Sellés is well aware of what the game means to both sets of fans

“We know that people will love that game – that’s the feeling with any club in a derby game,” he said.“So we hope that our fans will come along to the stadium, support us, and we will try to give something back.

“We have had a couple of games in that type of environment already and we love it. It will be a pleasure for us – if we can get a better result than we did on Saturday. Oxford have been doing things well this season and they will come here trying to be dominant. We need to be ready for that.

“Our fans have been amazing the entire season, supporting us on and off the pitch throughout our situations and our results. We keep working and keep going forward.”

United will be wearing their yellow home kit. Get yours for Christmas HERE

Our entire allocation of just over 2.900 tickets for the away area is sold out and none will be available on the night.

London Road Club
Tickets for coach travel to the game remain available with the London Road Club

Coaches will depart from the Kassam Stadium at 17:15pm prompt.


LRC Adult Member £17
LRC Under 18 Member £15
Adult non member £20
Under 18 non member £18

Visit or call 01865 337533 to book your place on the coach.

Under 14s must be accompanied by an adult and no alcohol is permitted on the coaches.

There have been 19 Oxford wins to Reading’s 16, with just two draws in the 37 previous meetings. The last two games, the only times Reading have played at the Kassam Stadium, have been in in the League Cup with the last game at Reading back in October 2000 when Reading won a dramatic game 4-3 - an own goal, Jon Richardson and Derek Lilley on the scoresheet for the U's.


Tickets may have sold out but you can still see the game live in iFollow in the UK and overseas with full commentary from our friends at BBC Oxford Sport. CLICK HERE to buy your match pass.

Follow the game on @OUFCOfficial on X and we will have a full report and gallery right here on the final whistle.

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Match Reports

REPORT Reading 1 Oxford United 1

Honours even in the Thames Valley Derby. Full time report

12 December 2023

It ended honours even in the first Thames Valley Derby for 20 years as Oxford United were forced to settle for a point  at Reading tonight.

Two goals in four first-half minutes saw Ciaron Brown's opener cancelled out by a Sam Smith equaliser in a full-blooded game played in a terrific atmosphere.

The game started, as expected, at a million miles an hour. Strikers Smith and Mark Harris were both close to crosses without quite being able to stretch far enough, while it took an outstanding block from Jordan Thorniley to prevent Harvey Knibbs scoring with the first shot of the night.

An injury to Ruben Rodrigues, who took a knock to the ankle at Peterborough on Saturday, meant a change of shape with Josh McEachran sitting just behind midfield duo Cameron Brannagan and Marcus McGuane, rather than Rodrigues being ahead of them. That meant a more patient approach and it wasn’t until the 39th minute that it paid off as the U's took the lead.

Having dominated possession, the hard-working Mark Harris worked the ball to the right and Stan Mills fizzed in a magnificent cross with his left foot. Brown threw himself forward and the U’s were a goal up.


Frustratingly, the lead lasted only four minutes. Smith has been a royal pain in United’s neck ever since his loan spell with them ended, first with Cambridge and now for the former Biscuitmen, this time racing clear and sliding the ball past the helplessly exposed Beadle to level things at 1-1.

Beadle kept it that way with a good save from the lively Knibbs before the break, but United grew stronger as the game went on, with far more intensity, driven forward by the superb Brannagan, who at one point almost went through the LED advertising boards such was his fierce determination.

Harris almost nodded the ball beyond Button, sub Joe Bennett saw a free kick fly harmlessly wide off the wall, and the work rate was ferocious as United dominated possession and pushed towards their magnificent away followers. Billy Bodin and Tyler Goodhram were given 25 minutes to try to find a second goal or carve out the one clear chance they needed; Josh Murphy was the danger man down the left as he repeatedly beat his man on the outside.

James Henry was given a chance to find a way past his former club, but there was to be no late local hero, and United had to settle for a point that moves them up to fifth in the table.

Wonderful support, plenty of effort and had a late Murphy drive curled a touch more and found the net rather than fly wide, or a Bodin drive not been blocked in injury time, then we'd be celebrating a derby win. Instead we hopefully wait until later in the season...

Att: 14,397
Away: 2,768

Report by Chris Williams, pictures Steve Edmunds, Steve Daniels, JasonPix and Darrell Fisher

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Ticket News

Reading Away Postponed

International call ups mean new date for Royals trip

30 September 2023

Our Sky Bet League 1 game away at Reading, scheduled for Saturday 14th October has been postponed.

Reading requested this to the EFL after a number of their players were called up for international duty and the U’s agreed to the request.

A new date will be announced as soon as possible but tickets for the original date, which is sold out for away fans, will be valid for the new fixture.

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