Crystal Palace manager Alan Pardew has acknowledged in his pre-match press conference that he may not receive a positive reception when he takes his team to the Madejski Stadium to face former club Reading.
Pardew began his managerial career with the Royals and took them from Division Two strugglers to promotion hopefuls in Division One, but he eventually forced through a switch to West Ham United, ensuring that he left the club under a dark cloud.
The 54-year-old has returned to the Berkshire outfit with other teams and not received the best of welcomes from the supporters, and he has hinted that he expects the same during the FA Cup quarter-final clash on Friday evening.
AP: I've never really had a great reception there, but that's understandable given how I left.— Crystal Palace FC (@CPFC) March 10, 2016
AP: The fans were always brilliant when I was there and that's all I could ask for. The reception is in their hands.— Crystal Palace FC (@CPFC) March 10, 2016
Pardew also took the time to speak on the match itself, and despite Reading's position in the bottom half of the Championship table, he is expecting a difficult test.
AP: It will be a tough game. It's a club and manager I know very well. They're a nice collective unity.— Crystal Palace FC (@CPFC) March 10, 2016
AP: They've got some good defensive assets and quality up the top of the pitch.— Crystal Palace FC (@CPFC) March 10, 2016
AP: I expect to see a team that next year will be pushing for the Premier League. This year, the cup is everything for them.— Crystal Palace FC (@CPFC) March 10, 2016
Palace head into the match as the marginal favourites, but Pardew finds himself under pressure to deliver a result after their recent run in the Premier League.
The Eagles have recorded just two points from 10 games, and although they have impressed in the FA Cup with wins over Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur, they cannot afford to slip to another setback with an opportunity to reach the last four of the competition at stake.