Reading's Championship play-off hopes were dented after Craig Conway's first-half goal saw Blackburn Rovers extend their unbeaten run to five games.

Conway, on his first start for the club, drove in an angled shot that went in via the outstretched leg of Reading captain Jobi McAnuff to seal victory.

Reading keeper Alex McCarthy prevented Jordan Rhodes from making it 2-0 with a fine save from his fierce drive.

Royston Drenthe went close to levelling with a powerful drive that flew over.

That was as near as Nigel Adkins' side came and, although they remain in the play-off places, they are just one point ahead of Wigan, who have a game in hand.

The hosts had chances to strengthen their position in the top six but endured a frustrating afternoon. McAnuff weak early effort after he was fed by Pavel Pogrebnyak was a sign of things to come.

Blackburn had threatened only sporadically - Rudy Gestede firing wide from a good opening - when they went ahead in the 36th minute from a breakaway.

Jordan Obita had a free-kick blocked by the wall at one end and the visitors countered swiftly.

Chris Gunter made a poor attempt at a clearing header and Rhodes fed Conway after winning the ball from Kaspars Gorkss. The Scot's low cross-shot appeared to be heading wide but took a generous deflection off McAnuff on its way past McCarthy.

McCarthy prevented Rhodes from making it 2-0 soon after with a fine save from a fierce drive, and the visitors also went close after the break when no one was on hand to touch home Tommy Spurr's superb skidding cross from the left.

Adkins had seen enough and made a triple substitution in the 62nd minute, bringing on Drenthe, Hal Robson-Kanu and Danny Guthrie.

The changes almost worked when Obita's centre evaded everyone apart from Drenthe at the far post, but the former Real Madrid midfielder scuffed his shot wide.

The Dutchman went even closer, with a powerful attempt that just cleared the crossbar, but Blackburn held on despite more than nine minutes of stoppage time.

Reading manager Nigel Adkins:

"We've been in good form and had good momentum, but, unfortunately, we haven't capitalised on that today.

"But we've been in this position before and we know what is required. As far as getting in the play-offs is concerned, I think we've got as good a chance as anyone.

"It was not a great game. It was a bit stop-start and Blackburn obviously came here to slow the game down. All credit to them. But the spirit is still strong, we'll put this one to bed and just move on."

Blackburn manager Gary Bowyer:

"This is a very tough place to come and I knew it was going to be a difficult afternoon.

"I was delighted at how we went about it, it was an impressive display. It was a great counter-attack for the goal, although it did take a bit of a deflection, and I was delighted for Craig.

"It was not the most attractive of games, but it was such a great team effort from us. It was massive."

Lineup, Bookings (7) & Substitutions (5)

Reading

  • 21 McCarthy
  • 02 Gunter
  • 37 Obita Booked
  • 23 Williams
  • 05 Pearce
  • 17 Gorkss
  • 12 McCleary (Drenthe - 62' )
  • 16 Akpan (Guthrie - 62' Booked )
  • 09 Le Fondre
  • 07 Pogrebnyak (Robson-Kanu - 62' )
  • 11 McAnuff Booked

Substitutes

  • 01 Federici
  • 03 Kelly
  • 10 Drenthe
  • 19 Robson-Kanu
  • 20 Guthrie
  • 22 Blackman
  • 35 Hector

Blackburn Rovers

  • 01 Robinson
  • 27 Henley
  • 03 Spurr
  • 06 Lowe Booked
  • 05 Hanley
  • 04 Kilgallon
  • 45 Cairney (Taylor - 59' Booked )
  • 17 Williamson Booked
  • 39 Gestede (Varney - 78' Booked )
  • 11 Rhodes
  • 32 Conway

Substitutes

  • 02 Kane
  • 08 Dunn
  • 13 Eastwood
  • 14 Olsson
  • 15 Varney
  • 19 Taylor
  • 29 Evans
Ref: Graham Scott
Att: 18,858

Match Stats

Shots

18 6

On target

1 3

Corners

9 4

Fouls

12 20

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Reading 0, Blackburn Rovers 1.

90:00 +10:52 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Reading 0, Blackburn Rovers 1.

90:00 +10:24

Attempt missed. Jobi McAnuff (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Hal Robson-Kanu.

90:00 +9:05

Foul by Kaspars Gorkss (Reading).

90:00 +9:05

Chris Taylor (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +7:20 Booking

Booking Chris Taylor (Blackburn Rovers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

90:00 +7:06

Adam Le Fondre (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

90:00 +7:06

Foul by Chris Taylor (Blackburn Rovers).

90:00 +5:41

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Adam Henley.

90:00 +5:00

Danny Guthrie (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +5:00

Foul by Lee Williamson (Blackburn Rovers).

90:00 +4:22

Offside, Reading. Royston Drenthe tries a through ball, but Alex Pearce is caught offside.

90:00 +4:19

Attempt missed. Royston Drenthe (Reading) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left following a set piece situation.

90:00 +4:16

Attempt blocked. Royston Drenthe (Reading) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

90:00 +3:48

Hand ball by Matthew Kilgallon (Blackburn Rovers).

90:00 +2:14

Royston Drenthe (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

90:00 +2:14

Foul by Thomas Spurr (Blackburn Rovers).

90:00 +1:35 Booking

Booking Danny Guthrie (Reading) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

90:00 +1:16

Foul by Danny Guthrie (Reading).

90:00 +1:16

Craig Conway (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick on the left wing.

90:00 +0:52

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Jason Lowe.

90:00 +0:11

Hal Robson-Kanu (Reading) wins a free kick on the right wing.

90:00 +0:11

Foul by Lee Williamson (Blackburn Rovers).

88:03

Hal Robson-Kanu (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

88:03

Foul by Thomas Spurr (Blackburn Rovers).

87:34

Corner, Blackburn Rovers. Conceded by Danny Guthrie.

85:08

Foul by Hal Robson-Kanu (Reading).

85:08

Lee Williamson (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

85:02

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

83:44 Booking

Booking Lee Williamson (Blackburn Rovers) is shown the yellow card.

82:58

Foul by Royston Drenthe (Reading).

82:58

Craig Conway (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

82:07

Attempt missed. Jobi McAnuff (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right following a set piece situation.

81:38 Booking

Booking Luke Varney (Blackburn Rovers) is shown the yellow card.

81:29

Chris Gunter (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

81:29

Foul by Luke Varney (Blackburn Rovers).

81:01

Attempt missed. Kaspars Gorkss (Reading) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Jordan Obita with a cross.

80:42

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Adam Henley.

79:30

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

78:28

Delay in match Adam Le Fondre (Reading) because of an injury.

77:56

Chris Gunter (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

77:56

Foul by Luke Varney (Blackburn Rovers).

77:38 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Blackburn Rovers. Luke Varney replaces Rudy Gestede.

76:20

Kaspars Gorkss (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

76:20

Foul by Rudy Gestede (Blackburn Rovers).

75:29 Booking

Booking Jordan Obita (Reading) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

75:23

Foul by Jordan Obita (Reading).

75:23

Jordan Rhodes (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

74:33

Danny Guthrie (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

74:33

Foul by Lee Williamson (Blackburn Rovers).

72:54

Attempt missed. Royston Drenthe (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Danny Guthrie.

72:01

Attempt missed. Craig Conway (Blackburn Rovers) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses the top right corner from a direct free kick.

70:46

Foul by Danny Guthrie (Reading).

70:46

Chris Taylor (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

69:15

Foul by Royston Drenthe (Reading).

69:15

Craig Conway (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick on the left wing.

68:41

Attempt missed. Royston Drenthe (Reading) left footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Jordan Obita with a cross.

66:36

Attempt blocked. Hal Robson-Kanu (Reading) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

65:35

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

63:25

Delay in match Daniel Williams (Reading) because of an injury.

62:53

Royston Drenthe (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

62:53

Foul by Lee Williamson (Blackburn Rovers).

62:23

Corner, Blackburn Rovers. Conceded by Jordan Obita.

61:51 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Reading. Danny Guthrie replaces Hope Akpan.

61:40 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Reading. Hal Robson-Kanu replaces Pavel Pogrebnyak.

61:24 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Reading. Royston Drenthe replaces Garath McCleary.

60:49

Foul by Daniel Williams (Reading).

60:49

Craig Conway (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

60:39

Attempt blocked. Daniel Williams (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

60:14

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Grant Hanley.

58:39 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Blackburn Rovers. Chris Taylor replaces Tom Cairney because of an injury.

55:35

Pavel Pogrebnyak (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

55:35

Foul by Matthew Kilgallon (Blackburn Rovers).

48:49

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

46:19

Delay in match Tom Cairney (Blackburn Rovers) because of an injury.

45:00

Second Half begins Reading 0, Blackburn Rovers 1.

45:00 +2:04 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Reading 0, Blackburn Rovers 1.

45:00 +1:20

Attempt missed. Pavel Pogrebnyak (Reading) left footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Adam Le Fondre.

45:00 +0:34

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Lee Williamson.

43:08

Jordan Obita (Reading) wins a free kick on the left wing.

43:08

Foul by Tom Cairney (Blackburn Rovers).

41:56 Booking

Booking Jobi McAnuff (Reading) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

41:32

Foul by Jobi McAnuff (Reading).

41:32

Rudy Gestede (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

40:30

Attempt saved. Jordan Rhodes (Blackburn Rovers) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Craig Conway.

39:51

Daniel Williams (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

39:51

Foul by Lee Williamson (Blackburn Rovers).

38:56

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Paul Robinson.

37:59

Corner, Blackburn Rovers. Conceded by Alex McCarthy.

37:54

Attempt saved. Jordan Rhodes (Blackburn Rovers) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Rudy Gestede with a headed pass.

37:14

Offside, Reading. Hope Akpan tries a through ball, but Jobi McAnuff is caught offside.

35:29 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Reading 0, Blackburn Rovers 1. Craig Conway (Blackburn Rovers) left footed shot from the left side of the box to the centre of the goal.

35:02

Attempt blocked. Jordan Obita (Reading) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

34:03 Booking

Booking Jason Lowe (Blackburn Rovers) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

33:53

Daniel Williams (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

33:53

Foul by Jason Lowe (Blackburn Rovers).

31:50

Hand ball by Adam Henley (Blackburn Rovers).

29:54

Attempt missed. Garath McCleary (Reading) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Pavel Pogrebnyak.

29:08

Foul by Garath McCleary (Reading).

29:08

Tom Cairney (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

26:29

Foul by Alex Pearce (Reading).

26:29

Jordan Rhodes (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

25:39

Attempt missed. Rudy Gestede (Blackburn Rovers) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Paul Robinson.

23:40

Attempt missed. Alex Pearce (Reading) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Jobi McAnuff with a cross following a corner.

23:16

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Adam Henley.

21:06

Attempt blocked. Daniel Williams (Reading) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Garath McCleary.

19:37

Pavel Pogrebnyak (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

19:37

Foul by Lee Williamson (Blackburn Rovers).

18:38

Corner, Blackburn Rovers. Conceded by Chris Gunter.

18:37

Attempt blocked. Jordan Rhodes (Blackburn Rovers) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Rudy Gestede with a headed pass.

18:05

Foul by Jordan Obita (Reading).

18:05

Jordan Rhodes (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

17:53

Attempt missed. Pavel Pogrebnyak (Reading) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jobi McAnuff with a cross.

17:23

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Matthew Kilgallon.

17:18

Attempt blocked. Hope Akpan (Reading) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jobi McAnuff.

16:53

Corner, Reading. Conceded by Grant Hanley.

14:34

Chris Gunter (Reading) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

14:34

Foul by Thomas Spurr (Blackburn Rovers).

9:57

Foul by Jason Lowe (Blackburn Rovers).

9:57

Daniel Williams (Reading) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

8:28

Foul by Matthew Kilgallon (Blackburn Rovers).

8:28

Adam Le Fondre (Reading) wins a free kick on the right wing.

5:01

Offside, Reading. Jordan Obita tries a through ball, but Adam Le Fondre is caught offside.

4:24

Attempt saved. Jobi McAnuff (Reading) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Pavel Pogrebnyak.

1:31

Offside, Reading. Kaspars Gorkss tries a through ball, but Adam Le Fondre is caught offside.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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