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Reading 3-0 Fulham Cham 06 1415 The Guardian

last updated Monday 15th September 2014, 2:28 PM

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The Guardian

Reading (1) 3-0 (0) Fulham

Reading outclass Fulham to increase pressure on Felix Magath

Fulham supporters called for their manager, Felix Magath, to be sacked as their side slumped to a fifth defeat in six Championship games. The visitors finished with 10 men as they capitulated at Reading, adding to the pressure on Magath, who joined only in February.

Reading won at a canter with a pair of headers from the on-loan striker Glenn Murray, on his debut, and a late effort from Nick Blackman.

Fulham's cause was rendered almost lost as early as the 18th minute, when the former Leeds striker Matt Smith, also on debut, was sent off for a lunge on Hope Akpan.

The west London club endured a miserable end to last season, winning only three matches out of 12 under Magath as they were relegated from the Premier League.

Fulham have started the Championship similarly poorly, losing their opening four matches before earning their first point against Cardiff.

It hardly got any better for them at the Madejski Stadium, where they were a goal and a man down before having the chance to settle into the game.

Fulham had begun brightly, with Ross McCormack volleying over from close range after a Smith header. But they went behind in the 15th minute from Reading's first purposeful attack, led by Jordan Obita along the left flank. Obita crossed early and Murray, on loan from Crystal Palace until January, dived to head home from close range.

Three minutes later it got worse for Fulham. Smith went in late and high on Akpan and the referee, Mike Jones, issued a red card immediately.

Fulham responded well, with Tim Hoogland denied only by a last-ditch tackle from Chris Gunter and Chris David forcing a fine save from the home goalkeeper Adam Federici. However, Reading swiftly assumed control, with Murray and Gunter going close from well-struck efforts.

The Reading pressure continued after the interval, with Simon Cox volleying straight at Fulham goalkeeper Gabor Kiraly.

Kiraly, on his debut, was in action soon after, making a stunning save to deny Jake Taylor.

But the pressure inevitably told, with a second goal arriving in the 54th minute when Murray nodded in a precise corner from Obita from close range. It was too much for many of the 2,745 Fulham fans, who rounded on Magath. "You're getting sacked in the morning" was followed by further choruses of "Felix out".

The visitors could have been swamped. Kiraly tipped a header from the home substitute Pavel Pogrebnyak - a former Fulham player - against the crossbar and Taylor drove narrowly wide from distance.

But they could not hold out at 2-0 until the end. In the 85th minute, the substitute Blackman ran through, rounded Kiraly and slotted the ball home. Fulham's misery was complete.

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