Late Mo Barrow and Yakou Meite goals steal the points for Reading.
- Match Report: Reading 3 – 2 Wigan Athletic
- Late goals from Mo Barrow and Yakou Meite earn Reading all three points at the Madejski Stadium
- Nick Powell and Joe Garner had twice given Latics the lead either side of John Swift free-kick
WIGAN ATHLETIC 2
Attendance: 15,401 (588 away)
Late goals from Mo Barrow and Yakou Meite snatched victory from the jaws of defeat for Reading as Latics’ away struggles continued at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Nick Powell and Joe Garner twice gave Paul Cook’s side the lead at the Madejski Stadium after John Swift’s free-kick had levelled matters before half-time but Barrow’s strike in the 88th minute and Meite’s effort deep into stoppage time grabbed all three points for the Royals.
Latics made four changes to the starting XI from Tuesday night's clash at Derby County, with Antonee Robinson, Jonas Olsson, Powell and Garner coming in for Danny Fox, Cedric Kipre, Lee Evans and Leon Clarke.
Fox, who started at left back against the Rams, was replaced during the first half by Kal Naismith due to a knee injury. Robinson returned to the starting XI at left back for the first time since his ankle injury on USA international duty in November.
Experienced Swedish centre half Olsson was in for his Latics debut, with Powell returning to start for the first time since his hamstring and calf injuries.
After a scrappy opening, Latics gained control of the game and first went close on 15 minutes when Garner harried Reading’s defence to earn Powell possession, with his backheel played into Morsy, who saw his shot blocked.
However, Latics found their way through on 20 minutes when Powell finished coolly after meeting a Jacobs cross following a brilliant bit of midfield play from Reece James.
Latics continued to be in the ascendency as Powell played in Jacobs but his shot was saved first time by the impressive Emi Martinez.
In response, Tyler Blackett’s pull back found Garath McCleary but his low shot was saved by Jamie Jones.
Unfortunately, though, Jones could do little to stop Swift’s leveller just before half-time as the midfielder curled home from the edge of the area after a controversial free-kick was given against James on the stroke of half-time.
Latics didn’t let the goal trouble them early in the second-half as they started brightly with a stinging Gavin Massey effort forcing Martinez into a save before Chey Dunkley fired over when well placed from a James corner.
Cook’s side got themselves in front soon after as Powell played a Massey cross into Garner’s path at the back post and the striker fired home.
Going in search of a third, Dunkley saw a header from a corner saved by Martinez before the goalkeeper produced his best save to deny Powell at point-blank range after Garner’s ball in behind had found Massey, who had crossed for the scorer of Latics’ first.
Chances continued to flow for Latics as Martinez rolled the ball into the path of James and left most of his goal vacant but the Chelsea loanee fired wide from 25 yards.
Samy Morsy then hit a fine effort towards Martinez’s top corner, but he was once again on hand to make the save.
As Latics looked to be heading towards a valuable three points, they hit self-destruct when Barrow drove home from range before Meite bundled the ball home from a late set-piece.
The story of Latics’ season on the road.
Reading FC: Martinez, Yiadom, Moore (Capt), Swift, McCleary (Harriott 67), Baker, Barrow, Ejaria (Loader 35), Miazga, Meite, Blackett
Subs: Walker, Gunter, McShane, East, Olise
Latics: Jones, Byrne, Dunkley, Olsson, Robinson, Morsy (Capt), James, Powell (Clarke 77), Jacobs, Massey (Naismith 73), Garner (Windass 90)
Subs: Evans, Gibson, Roberts, Kipre.