Wigan and Reading played out a relatively entertaining goalless draw at the DW Stadium in the Sky Bet Championship with plenty of attacking intent but a lack of attacking quality at both ends of the field.
The home side had a goal rightly disallowed for offside in the first half when Nick Powell – who later limped off injured – nodded home from Reece James’ cross.
But the visitors too were a threat on the counter, and Wigan goalkeeper Christian Walton made a couple of fine diving saves to preserve another clean sheet.
Reading had the first chance of the game inside five minutes when Garath McCleary walked through the Wigan midfield and his cross-shot was steered goalwards by Yakou Meite, forcing a brilliant save Walton at point blank range.
The flag up was up in any case, but it was impressive stuff from the on-loan Brighton goalkeeper.
At the other end, a wonderful cross from the impressive James was flicked on by Kal Naismith for Cedric Kipre arriving at the far post, but he planted his header wide of the mark.
A stinging left-foot strike from Powell, out of nowhere, forced a brilliant tip over by Anssi Jaakkola, who was helpless from the resulting corner as the Wigan frontman headed home at the near post.
Unfortunately for Wigan, there was an offside in the short corner routine and the goal was disallowed.
Reading were almost in front when a cross was met at the near post by Meite, whose effort hit the outside of the post on its way behind.
James then headed over his own bar as the Royals threatened, but the visitors were soon on the back foot as Naismith’s cross was flicked on by Powell to Nathan Byrne, who showed why he has never scored for Wigan by heading wide from a great position.
Wigan picked up where they had left off at the start of the second half with Josh Windass being denied by Jaakkola, who also moved smartly to deny Gary Roberts, with Windass steering the rebound wide of goal.
Wigan were claiming a penalty when Roberts appeared to be tripped as he tried to get on the end of a scramble in the box, but instead he was shown a yellow card for diving.
The home side were rocked by the loss of Powell to a hamstring injury, with Joe Garner on in his place.
Garner was soon joined up top by Will Grigg – back after a five-game absence – but Reading remained a threat and both Meite and John Swift tested Walton, who was equal to it.
Darron Gibson blasted inches wide for Wigan in the closing stages, but neither side proved able to break the deadlock despite five added minutes.
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