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Boxing Day's crucial clashes

For those who want to get a breath of fresh air tomorrow and cheer off some Christmas excesses then there are tickets left for most of our football fixtures tomorrow. Full match coverage at on the ITV Sport website here. All 3pm kick-offs unless stated.

  • Fulham v Southampton
  • Reading v Swansea
  • Leyton Orient v Swindon Town
  • Bournemouth v Yeovil
  • Portsmouth v Crawley Town
  • Gillingham v Barnet (1 pm kick off)
  • Aldershot v Bristol Rovers
  • Exeter v Oxford United

McDermott pays tribute to Sir Alex ahead of clash

Reading host Manchester United in tomorrow's late kick off. Both managers have been paying tribute to each other ahead of the game.

Sir Alex Ferguson is predicting a tough game and told reporters his opponents are improving all the time. Reading boss Brian McDermott says the 12-time Premier League champion offered him advice last season.

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McDermott stays focused on winning

Reading manger Brian McDermott during the Barclays Premier League match at the Madejski Stadium Credit: Phil Cole/PA Wire

McDermott felt his side were not at their best until the second half.

"First half we were a little bit too respectful, in the second half I thought we deserved to win," he said.

"In any sport what you need to do is stay in the game, I just said (at half-time) that you are right in the game at 1-0 and if we can raise our tempo and play the way we can it will give us an opportunity.

Win is turning point for Reading - McDermott

Brian McDermott believes the club's maiden Barclays Premier League victory of the season is a turning point for the club. The win lifted Reading out of the bottom three. More details and all the latest football news can be found on the ITV Sport site here.

Everyone was saying 'You haven't won, you haven't won' and that can play on people's minds and I obviously know that.

"But all you can do is concentrate on playing the game, enjoying the games and then the results will come because I know with the group we have got there was never any fear that they couldn't do it.

"Certainly as the manager it (the winless streak) is not relevant, all that is relevant is the points you have got on the board.

– Brian McDermott, Reading FC Manager - full coverage on the ITV Sport website here

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