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Reading fans celebrate annual ‘inflatables day’

Reading's famous ‘inflatables day' has become notorious within English football, and supporters of the club ensured the custom continued during their trip to Burton Albion's Pirelli Stadium on Saturday, April 20.

Fans were warned that any inflatables would be banned but that didn't stop supporters of the Royals from smuggling them into the ground anyway.

Reading fans play cricket on ‘inflatables day'

Reading inflatables day
Supporters were warned that inflatables would be banned but they embraced their annual tradition anyway. Photo by Icon Sport

What is Reading's ‘inflatables day'?

In recent years, it has become somewhat of a tradition among supporters of the club to take an array of inflatables to the side's last away game of the season.

It has led to some hilarious and unique scenes as a result and often helps to create an excellent atmosphere in whichever stadium it takes place.

We never know what inflatables are going to be used, and supporters truly outdid themselves this year.

Pre-match game of cricket

Despite Burton publicly announcing that they had banned inflatables from their ground ahead of the match due to health and safety concerns, it quickly became clear prior to kick-off that Reading supporters had not taken any notice.

Travelling fans had begun to gather in a local pub and, with the pints already flowing, decided to indulge in a good old game of cricket to keep themselves occupied. However, the bats being used were, rather than traditional wood, made out of inflatables.

It was one of the first signs that this year's ‘inflatables day' would indeed be going ahead despite the ban.

Inflatables pictured inside Pirelli Stadium

Fast forward to the approximate time of kick-off at Burton Albion's ground and lo and behold, inflatables were plentiful in the stands. Burton may have banned their presence, but here they were, present regardless.

Beach balls, among other inflatable objects, could be seen being tossed around the away end at the Pirelli Stadium with the travelling supporters in good spirits despite a turbulent few months at the club.

Who can blame them?

It has been a difficult time to be a Reading fan, with the club's owner, Dai Yongee, essentially plunging the side into an ever-increasing amount of financial trouble, resulting in what must feel like a conveyor belt of point deductions for the Royals.

With that in mind, there has been very little for their supporters to cheer about of late, so who can blame them for keeping an entertaining tradition alive and attempting to make the best of a bad situation?

Here's to hoping for plenty more ‘inflatables days' in the future.


Harry Dowsett

Freelance football writer with experience writing for multiple digital platforms, such as GIVEMESPORT. Recently graduated from Portsmouth University with a media studies degree - completing a dissertation on the evolution of sports journalism in the process. He has a love for Arsenal Football Club and a passion for football as a whole.

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