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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

16 March 2024 Venue Select Car Leasing Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

Match Preview: Reading vs U's

15 March 2024

Cambridge United are out to change their fortunes this weekend as they take on Reading in an important Sky Bet League One clash at the Madejski Stadium…

How to Watch

Approximately 1,000 U’s fans will make the trip to Berkshire for Saturday’s tie, which gets underway at 3pm.

Those who wish to join the sea of amber can purchase their tickets online at or over the phone by calling 01223 566500 (option 1). Alternatively, tickets will be available on the day at a £4 price increase.

Unable to attend? Fans in the UK can listen to full match commentary with iFollow or on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, whilst overseas supporters can stream the game live with an iFollow Video Match Pass.

Opposition Focus

Formed during the festive period of 1871, the hosts gradually built up steam towards 1895, where they turned professional and would go on to enjoy 22 seasons in the Southern League and gain some FA Cup exploits in the process. After gaining election to the Football League in 1920, the club have not looked back since. Predominantly a Third Division outfit throughout the course of their history, a spellbinding record-breaking 106 points in 2005/06 saw them storm to the Championship title, before finishing a remarkable 8th in their first ever season in the Premier League. Returning for just a sole season since (2012), the Royals’ 10-year stay in the second tier came to an end last time out, with their League One venture proving tricky to navigate - but the signs are there that the side can consolidate first and foremost in spite of behind-the-scenes turmoil.

Under the tutelage of Rubén Sellés, who at just 40 has already obtained brief experience coaching in the top flight, Reading’s youthful and vibrant side have been hard-working and adaptable. Not short of experience, goalkeeper David Button could return to the sticks and should have Amadaou Mbengue and Tyler Bindon, just 22 and 19 respectively, in the middle of defence with bombing full-backs Jeriel Dorsett and Clinton Mola either side. The two protectors are the silky Charlie Savage and all-action Lewis Wing, who set the tone for attacks. Ben Elliot and Femi Azeez are out wide and form part of a back four which contains familiar faces Harvey Knibbs, on 16 goal involvements this season, and Sam Smith, who too is in fine fettle having bulged the onion bag ten times.

A streaky start to life in the third tier saw the Royals lose their opening two, win the following two with successive clean sheets, before successive defeats followed – including the reverse. This started a nasty streak, where the side recorded one victory from 12, which included six consecutive losses in October to put them rock bottom. From here, fortunes flipped – a 5-1 battering against Carlisle United helped form a run of one defeat from nine heading into 2024. A corner was clearly turned, a slender 1-0 loss to Wigan Athletic was backed up by a six-match unbeaten streak, with momentum propelled. Most recently, Reading have succumbed to four defeats and two wins from six, they’re in 18th due to their six-point deduction, sitting with a five-point gap from the bottom four.

Form Guide

Reading: WLWLL

Cambridge United: LLLDL

United’s Approach

It was a night to forget last time out as Lincoln City condemned the U’s to a humbling 6-0 defeat at Sincil Bank.

A third-minute strike from Jack Moylan set the tone for a disastrous night for the visitors, who simply couldn’t respond as the Imps powered to the win in the second half as Moylan and Joe Taylor grabbed a brace, before Timothy Eyoma and Dylan Duffy rubbed salt in the wounds near the death.

Examining the result, Garry Monk stated, “It's food for thought for me. I maybe need to reassess. I like to attack but I maybe need a different strategy away from home… One thing we’ll do is stick together; I know there’s more than enough in that changing room – I think they know it. We need to work to make sure they can bring it out and build confidence.”

A rapid response will be the task this weekend, as the U’s sit in 20th with a five-point gap from the drop zone, the exact same predicament as the hosts. With nine matches left and 27 points to fight for, heading into a two-week break with a first victory in seven would do United the world of good.


Reading Wins: 10

Cambridge United Wins: 10

Draws: 6

Down Memory Lane

A memorable evening under the Abbey floodlights, and in front of the Sky Sports cameras, saw Cambridge make a real statement in September as they clinched a commendable 1-0 triumph.

The U’s piled on the pressure from the get-go and built on a positive first half by gaining a deserved winner late in a scorching night through substitute Fejiri Okenabirhie, who thundered home his fourth strike of the season to rise his side into the top six.

Prior to that, the sides last pitted their wits back in September 2002 when United progressed to the Second Round of the League Cup after dispatching the Royals 3-1 courtesy of goals from Andy Duncan, Dave Kitson and Shane Tudor. The unbeaten run is now at three games, with the U’s plotting a first ever win at Saturday’s venue on what will be their fourth attempt.


Referee: Benjamin Speedie

Assistant Referee: Sean Rothwell

Assistant Referee: Samuel Fudge

Fourth Official: Stuart Butler

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Match Reports

Report: Reading 4-0 Cambridge United

16 March 2024

Cambridge United’s latest Sky Bet League One tie saw them succumb to a heavy 4-0 defeat against Reading at the Select Car Leasing Stadium…

Strikes in the first half from Sam Smith and Femi Azeez was enough to set the tone for the afternoon, as the free-flowing hosts comfortably controlled the game and then applied further damage after the break through Lewis Wing’s and Kelvin Ehibhatiomhan’s blistering goals.

Heading into the encounter, both sides were situated on 39 points with a five-point gap separating them from the bottom four. Extending that and securing a first victory from seven was on the agenda for the U’s, who required a stern approach against the Royals, who had improved since the turn of the year but ultimately were still in the fight following three defeats from four.

In response to the midweek thrashing at Lincoln City, Garry Monk stressed the significance of a positive reaction by tinkering with his setup as he named the solitary change to his XI. James Gibbons returned to the side as Jack Lankester made way, whilst Gassan Ahadme was included in the matchday squad for the first time since December.

An excellent noise from both sets of fans behind the U’s defensive half helped create an energetic introduction.

It was down the other end on the 9th minute where the first chance was generated, when Liam Bennett – playing in an advanced winger role – whipped in a teasing cross to Michael Morrison at the back post who flicked a header inches wide of Joel Pereira’s left post.

The deadlock was broken a matter of seconds later courtesy of a move down the right when Azeez slipped in Harvey Knibbs, whose delivery into the six-yard box was cleared - only to fall invitingly to a lurking Smith who poked past Jack Stevens.

Five minutes later, the front-footed hosts forced Stevens into a vital save when Smith latched onto an excellent lofted through ball from Tyler Bindon, with United’s number one getting a paw to poke the ball away just before the striker could pull the trigger.

Having to ride the wave of momentum, Monk’s men remained pegged back and had to ensure the scoreline remained tight, with Clinton Mola next to go close on 20 when the defender retained the ball for a sustained period, dribbling from the corner and into space, where he rifled a 25-yard effort just over the crossbar.

The only opportunity the U’s could muster during the first period arrived on the 43rd minute when Lyle Taylor’s pinpoint cross from the corner of the penalty area nestled towards Morrison but he couldn’t arrive in the nick of time to divert a certain header on target.

A killer blow was dealt on the verge of half-time when Azeez launched a counter attack from the centre circle by sprinting into the area and diverting a shot into the near post to hand United a mountain to climb following the break.

After introducing Will Mannion and Sullay Kaikai to the fold during the break, the visitors came out with a really good impetus and came agonisingly close to reducing the deficit on the 47th minute. A well-worked move was concluded by L. Bennett’s exquisite deep cross to Elias Kachunga, whose header was expertly saved on the line by Pereira, before a Royals defender blocked his rebound. Play was recycled from here, but Kaikai put the ball wide from a matter of yards.

Although the tempo was improving, a goal was needed and fast. On 56, a one-two down the left from Paul Digby and James Brophy allowed a clearance, which fell to Jordan Cousins from long range with the goalkeeper not in net, but it was speculative as the strike was blocked.

The game looked to be out of reach on the hour mark when Wing picked up the ball inside the area and managed to curl a looping attempt past every U’s man to increase the advantage.

With the energy zapped and the match becoming more one-sided from here, the substitutions were rolled and the attempts continued to flow as Knibbs came close before Smith’s 79th minute header creeped just over Mannion’s crossbar.

Five minutes from time, Ehibhatiomhan added to the proceedings with a well-taken volley into the top corner, which proved to be the last piece of action as United were consigned to another disappointing defeat on the road.

The U’s are now without an encounter for the next couple of weeks, with their next third tier tie coming against Barnsley at Oakwell on Friday 29th March – be sure to back the boys during the Easter period.


Reading: Pereira, Mola, Mbengue (Dean, 87’), Bindon, Dorsett (Abrefa, 75’), Wing, Savage (Rushesha, 87’), Azeez (Ehibhatiomhan, 76’), Knibbs, Elliott (Mukairu, 55’), Smith

Subs Not Used: Button, Wareham

Goalscorers: Smith (10’), Azeez (45+1’), Wing (61’), Ehibhatiomhan (84’)



Cambridge United: Stevens (Mannion, 46’), Gibbons, R. Bennett, Morrison, Andrew (Kaikai, 46’), Cousins (Lankester, 72’), L. Bennett, Digby, Brophy, Kachunga, Taylor (Ahadme, 81’)

Subs Not Used: Okedina, May, Bonne


Bookings: R. Bennett


Referee: Benjamin Speedie

Attendance: 15,644 (984 away fans)

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Ticket News

Tickets & Travel: Reading (A)

9 February 2024

Ticket information for United's upcoming away game at Reading has been confirmed...

The U's travel to the Select Car Leasing Stadium on Saturday 16 March for a 3pm kick-off in Sky Bet League One.

1688 tickets have initially been allocated to United's travelling supporters, with prices as follows:

  Adult 65+ 18-24 years 17 and under 12 and under
South Stand £22 £16 £13 £8 £6
Upper West £24 £18 £15 £10 £7
Family Area £18 £16 £13 £5 £2

The family area is first come, first served and highlighted in blue at

For wheelchair tickets, please call 01223 566500.

Supporters can buy their tickets online at, over the phone by calling 01223 566500 (option 1) or by visiting the Abbey Stadium Ticket Office.

One Away Credit will be issued upon purchasing tickets for this fixture, which are used to prioritise away ticket sales for games where demand is likely to exceed capacity.

For further information or assistance, please email, call 01223 566500 or tweet @cufc_to.


Get to the game with Cambridge Fans United's (CFU) Away Travel Coach. Coach tickets will go on sale soon from the SLO Away Travel Store.

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