Reading v Port Vale abandoned after pitch invasion protest

Reading fans invade the pitch
Reading fans invade the pitch

Reading’s League One match against Port Vale was abandoned after hundreds of home fans invaded the pitch in protest against owner Dai Yongge.

Play was stopped in the 16th minute at the Select Car Leasing Stadium.

Reading urged supporters to leave the pitch, but the game was called off when they refused.

“Every effort was made to restart the game but it became increasingly obvious that this would not be possible,” said an EFL spokesperson.

“We will now discuss the implications of this afternoon’s events with the clubs involved.”

Sell Before We Dai, a fan-led group urging Yongge to sell Reading, said the action was “just the start”.

“We shouldn’t be doing this. We should be enjoying the game with friends and family,” the group posted on X.

“This is just the start Dai. We are coming for you. So do yourself a favour and sell.”

Play was initially held up in the third minute when supporters threw tennis balls on to the pitch.

After the pitch invasion, referee Ross Joyce took the players into the dressing rooms, while the supporters remained, with some letting off blue flares.

Fans chanted anti-Yongge slogans and unveiled a banner in the centre circle that read “Football has an ownership problem”.

After approaching the Vale fans, some of whom applauded, most of the Reading supporters started to head back to the stands. But many returned and staged a sit-in in the centre circle.

“We must reiterate to our supporters that entering or throwing items onto the pitch can put the fixture at risk of abandonment and can result in personal consequences including banning orders,” Reading wrote on X at the time.

“We appreciate supporters’ frustrations. Please leave the field of play. The club will face serious sanctions if this does not take place.”

The fixture will be restaged later in the season on a midweek date.

Last month fans protested at the Houses of Parliament against Yongge following sanctions imposed by the EFL, including a transfer embargo over an unpaid tax bill.

Reading have suffered a series of deductions totalling 16 points since November 2021, including four in August.

They are fourth from bottom of the table, three points from safety.

Bolton Wanderers’ League One game against Cheltenham Town was called off earlier on Saturday because of a medical emergency in the stadium.



Formation 4-1-4-1

  • 1Button
  • 17Yiadom
  • 24Bindon
  • 32Abbey
  • 20Dorsett
  • 36Craig
  • 11Azeez
  • 29Wing
  • 7Knibbs
  • 12Mukairu
  • 10Smith


  • 2Mola
  • 5McIntyre
  • 8Savage
  • 15Ehibhatiomhan
  • 22Castro Pereira
  • 27Mbengue
  • 42Vickers

Port Vale

Formation 3-4-2-1

  • 1Ripley
  • 6Smith
  • 16Lowe
  • 17Iacovitti
  • 19Massey
  • 11Devine
  • 20Weir
  • 15Grant
  • 29Wilson
  • 10Chislett
  • 12Ikpeazu


  • 2Cass
  • 4Sang
  • 9Loft
  • 13Leutwiler
  • 24Walters
  • 25Dipepa
  • 30Lomax

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Source: BBC News

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