Time is running out if Reading are to scramble their way to Premier League safety but as they await the visit of high flying West Brom, coach Brian McDermott will take heart from the fact that the Royals are unbeaten in their last two home encounters in the Premier League, taking four points without conceding a goal.
Reading may hand debuts to new signings Daniel Carrico and Hope Akpan, two new arrivals that will boost the home side, who continue to be without striker Jason Roberts, while Hal Robson-Kanu and Mikele Leigertwood are both doubtful. Adam Le Fondre may be selected alongside Pavel Pogrebnyak up front after his goalscoring exploits in the FA Cup victory at Crawley last week.
Meanwhile, West Brom are looking to arrest a shaky slump in form that has seen them slump from third in the table to a still respectable seventh. Steve Clarke will be without long-serving midfielder Zoltan Gera, who has been ruled out for the season after suffering a cruciate ligament injury.
Elsewhere, Clarke has doubts over a number of first team regulars with Jonas Olsson, Goran Popov, Steven Reid and Claudio Yacob all struggling with a combination of groin, hamstring and calf injuries respectively, while another key midfielder, Youssouf Mulumbu has travelled to the Africa Cup of Nations to represent DR Congo.