Breaking newsReading have been deducted a point by the EFL for rule breaches, their second points deduction this year

Reading have been deducted one point by the English Football League for failing to pay their players on time and in full on three occasions last season.

The regulation breaches relate to instances on 31 October 2022, 30 November 2022, and 28 April 2023.

Reading, who beat Cheltenham on Tuesday, now have two points and drop to 18th in League One.

Owner Dai Yongge has also been fined £10,000 and ordered to deposit funds to avoid further breaches.

This is the second time the Royals have been docked points this calendar year, with the club also given a six-point deduction in April for breaching the terms of an agreed business plan - for a previous profit and sustainability rule breach.

They were relegated to the third tier at the end of last season and were again placed under a transfer embargo this summer, which was lifted earlier this month.

The latest penalty includes a further three-point deduction, which has been suspended.

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Dai has been given 28 days to put 125% of the club’s forecast monthly wage bill into a designated account. Failure to do that, or to pay wages on time until 30 June 2024, will mean the additional three-point deduction will be activated.

“The EFL remains extremely frustrated at the consistent failures of the club’s ownership to meet its ongoing obligations under EFL regulations, the consequences of which are having a negative impact for all those associated with Reading, particularly its staff members, supporters, and local community,” a statement said.

Reading said that after being charged in June they “accepted the charges in principle”.

“Our dialogue with the EFL and the independent disciplinary commission has been open throughout the process and, in accepting that the repeated late payment of wages is wholly unacceptable, we believe the punishment is just,” a club statement said.

“The wage bill has been satisfied in full and on time for the last three months and, as recently communicated to supporters, our owner will continue to seek and secure reliable sources of stable external investment which will ensure cashflow complications do not arise and result in any further breaches of EFL regulations.”