Rampant Royals hit five
By Adam Marshall. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
Reading are top of the Championship table after a resounding 5-0 mauling of bottom-placed Millwall.
Bobby Convey struck twice as The Lions were devastated by the sending off of keeper Andy Marshall. With no replacement goalie on the bench, Mark Phillips was forced to don the gloves.
Millwall actually started brightly with Ben May and David Livermore producing noteworthy efforts but Reading crucially drew first blood.
A solo run by USA international Convey enabled him to calmly beat Marshall to open the scoring with only six minutes on the clock.
The game was put beyond the visitors when Marshall handled outside his box to frustrate Leroy Lita and was red-carded. To rub salt into the wounds, Convey crashed home the free kick to double Reading's lead.
The floodgates were opened with James Harper heading Steve Sidwell's corner past Phillips and Sammy Igoe's handball inside the box allowed Dave Kitson to make it 4-0 before the interval with a penalty.
With Convey and Kitson being replaced, the threat subsided a little for The Lions and Marvin Elliott mustered a couple of efforts at the other end.
There was one final goal for the home fans to cheer, though, as Sidwell rose to power in Glen Little's corner to wrap up an emphatic victory for Steve Coppell's promotion hopefuls.