Game Number 21 of the 2014/15 season
The first game of the season for Stoke City U21’s at the Moss Rose, as part of an agreement between the two clubs which will see a further six games played away from the Britannia.
It is fair to say that this one didn’t catch the imagination of the Macclesfield public either, with just a handful of paying spectators in attendance. Scouts were certainly in the majority, with a host of names from Arsenal to the Irish FA having sent their notepad carrying representatives along. I’ve always wondered why scouts get free passes to football though; yes please come and take our best player for a minimal fee, it doesn’t matter that you are a Premier League scout at a conference ground, please come in for nowt!
The game itself was a bit of a let down, with a pre-season pace and tackling style on show, certainly not what I would have expected from Stoke. The passing of the players was noticeably more crisp than I am used to in non league, but there was little cutting edge on show here.
Reading were sharper for most of this encounter and found themselves 2-0 up thanks to some precise finishing and well timed blocks at the other end. Stoke seemed to liven up with twenty minutes to go, but as is often the case it was too little too late and they were only able to notch a single goal in reply.
Was expecting a bit more from this one, and now have a long wait until mid December for the next game.
Entertainment = 5/10