Feds in line for Gunners recall
Published: 29 Oct 2012 12:300 comments
READING keeper Adam Federici could return to the starting line-up on Tuesday night when Royals host Arsenal in the fourth round of the Capital One Cup (7.45pm ko), writes Alex Gore.
The 27-year-old Australian was dropped after a series of blunders earlier in the season - including during the 3-2 home win over Peterborough United in the second round.
But his efforts to reclaim the number one spot have been hampered by a knee injury and the form of 22-year-old Alex McCarthy.
Royals boss Brian McDermott, who will be hoping Reading can put their league woes behind when his former side come to town, stressed he will not be picking the team until after the Fulham game this Saturday, but added: "Adam is fit, he played the other night for the Under 21s and he has a chance."
The Gunners have looked sharp in the Premier League despite their mid-table position, but are likely to play a weakened side. But this did not stop them from securing their trip to the Madejski Stadium in spectacular fashion.
McDermott explained: "Anyone who plays for Arsenal on the night will be a top player, we know that. They beat Coventry 6-1 in the last round so we know what to expect.
"Hopefully the stadium will be full again and it's an opportunity for us to get into the last eight of the competition.
"Arsenal are my old club so I've obviously got a lot of respect for them. But we're trying to win the game and it's all I'm thinking of."
Reading, who posted a thrilling 3-2 victory over OPR at Loftus Road in round three, will be without Jem Karacan. The central midfielder suffered a knee ligament injury during last weekend's clash with Liverpool at Anfield. "Jem has had his scan and he will be out for a while," stated McDermott.
"It's bad news for him and we hope he recovers quicky. It's a chance for someone else to show what they can do."
Karacan, 23, recovered from a broken ankle last season but suffered another setback on Saturday following a clash with Steven Gerrard.
"I've done the medial ligaments before so I knew when I did it that it wasn't great," he said. ""After coming back from however long, four or five months after my ankle, it's gutting."
Sean Morrison, Simon Church and Jay Tabb, who have struggled to make the league starting line-up, are likely to feature against the Gunners.