Three first half Hayes & Yeading goals were enough to see United to a comfortable three points against a Reading Town side who passed the ball well but could not find a way through the well marshalled home defence.
The action started quickly and just 50 seconds had been played when a Daniel Wishart corner was headed out to Ashley Barnes who fired back a fierce volley that Reading keeper Chris Rackley did extremely well to push away. United had a scare of their own just two minutes later when the ball scrambled around in the area before being cleared away by the assured James King.
Despite the rapid start to the game, we had to wait until the 16th minute for the deadlock to be broken. United were awarded a free-kick to the right of the Reading area, Wishart stepped up and smashed the ball past the wall and into the top corner giving Rackley no chance.
Just after the half hour mark the United lead was doubled when Nathan Webb played the ball from the centre of the park towards the run of Josh Andrew. Andrew outpaced the last defender before sliding the ball past Rackley.
Six minutes remained and the visitors almost pulled one back. Jake Morris broke away down the right side and crossed to the near post where the impressive George Batts arrived first but could only steer the ball wide of Alex Tokarczyk’s upright. Within seconds not only had play switched ends but the ball was in the back of the Reading net. Barnes raced away down the right, beat Dan Pomeroy before firing low to the near post and Andrew showed how it should be done as he netted from close range.
Before the break United had two further chances to increase the lead only to twice be denied by Rackley who firstly held a Barnes drive before pushing a Joakim Ehui effort around the post.
United appeared to relax in the second half and chances were few and far between for them. Reading were also barely allowed to get near the United goal either although they did go close on 55 minutes when Abdul Ally stooped to head a cross just wide of the post and a few minutes later a weak clearance with Tokarczyk out of his goal saw Ally try his luck from 40 yards but he was well off target.
Just after the hour mark Ehui should have got the goal that his work rate deserved after good work again on the flank by Barnes. The wide man drew Rackley to him before rolling the ball into the centre for Ehui but he fired over the vacant net.
Andrew then had a great opportunity to complete his hat-trick. Wishart fed the ball into him with his back to goal, he chipped it over his marker and ran onto the ball only for his shot to be deflected wide off Rackley’s legs. Reading’s final chance to beat Tokarczyk came a couple of minutes later, Lee Cliburn crossed from the right and Batts was again first to the ball at the near post but once more he could not hit the target.
The final chance of the game saw Mitchell Dunstall fire a cross field pass to Wishart who tried his luck from 25 yards but the ball dipped just over the Reading crossbar.
Report by Kevin Watts.
Website United Man of the Match: Josh Andrew.