News and Views

Late Forest Goal As Royals Fail To Win Again

21 February 2018
By Hob Nob Anyone?

There was more disappointment for Reading fans on Tuesday night as the Royals conceded a late goal at Nottingham Forest to leave with just a single point. The Royals looked to be heading for only their second victory in 12 league games until Forest, also in a run of very poor form, equalised with five minutes left to play.

Reading had looked impressive in the opening half and deserved their half time lead after the excellent Omar Richards put Reading ahead with his first senior goal for the club on 35 minutes. After the break it was a different story as Reading faded and the home side looked likely to pull level as the pressure increased. Mannone was in fine form in goal for the Royals, but after Forest forced some saves and also hit the crossbar, the goal eventually came with five minutes left to play.

Despite dropping two points late on Royals boss Jaap Stam was pleased with the point and the performance: "The team worked very hard and the players did their best. It was important to get something out of the game, though we would have liked to have had more." The 1-1 draw sees the Royals remain in 18th place in the Championship table and just four points away from the bottom three.

Although there were definitely more positive signs earlier in the game and the emergence of Omar Richards continues to be a bonus, Reading remain deep in relegation trouble with the next 3 games all against teams in the top seven. Reading face Derby at home on Saturday, followed by Sheffield United also at the Madejski Stadium, before heading to run away leaders Wolves. Even without our current disastrous run of form we may have struggled to pick up any points in these games. Stam and his team will have to avoid three straight defeats or Reading may find themselves in the bottom three or marginally outside, and surely it will past the tipping point for Jaap Stam.


Discussion On This Story:


» 20 Feb 2018 23:50

Decent result overall, excellent first half which we fully deserved to go in 1-0 up. With Aluko playing in the revolutionary position of ‘out wide’, we had width on both sides (with Barrow supported by the mostly excellent Richards on the left). Martin held the ball up well (even if he did miss a fairly decent chance....)

2nd half we looked panicked and scared. We resorted to trying far too hard to play it quickly, which just gave it back to Forest. They totally dominated the ball and the chances. They had numerous chances to score before Tomlin (who else :roll: ) finally put us out of our misery. The fact he should have been sent off for two yellows when he threw his toys out of the pram confirmed he would score. Bacuna had a great chance to make it 2-0.....but his decision to shoot rather than square it to Martin did cost us in the end. Interesting to note as the game wore on, Aluko drifted further and further in-field.....which reduced our outlet and caused us to drop deeper and deeper.

My MOM tonight was probably Vito in the end. His free kick saves in the first half and two saves in the second meant we left with s point. Richards ran him close but overplayed it a few too many times. Gunter was ok, but took far too many risks or threw himself to the floor to get out of trouble. It didn’t always work. Finally, it was so sad to see GMac be a passenger as a sub.....he never looked liked doing anything useful and the game completely passed him by.


» 21 Feb 2018 00:13

I wouldn't call the first half "excellent". We edged it but I'd say based on the second half that was more because Forest sat off.

Overall a pretty poor game between two pretty poor sides. Aluko is a horrible footballer.

That's all.

 Woodcote Royal

» 21 Feb 2018 00:24

Quite. We all love GMac but he's been a shadow of his former self for at least a year now. Add to this to the fact that Aluko rarely looks worth 7 million pennies let alone pounds and it simply beggars belief that both Beerens and Popa were deemed surplus to requirement and disposed of.

When decisions like this are made by managers who are allowed to keep their jobs, it's time to realise the writing is on the wall.

Respect to all those who went.


» 21 Feb 2018 00:50

Quite. We all love GMac but he's been a shadow of his former self for at least a year now. Add to this to the fact that Aluko rarely looks worth 7 million pennies let alone pounds and it simply beggars belief that both Beerens and Popa were deemed surplus to requirement and disposed of.

When decisions like this are made by managers who are allowed to keep their jobs, it's time to realise the writing is on the wall.

Respect to all those who went.

You lost all respect when you mentioned Beerens. He was quite rightly disposed of for being useless.

Popa we can only assume was indifferent in training.


» 21 Feb 2018 06:51

OP seems a fairer reflection of the game than a lot on the other thread

2 points dropped being as we were 1 up, but Forest would have felt hard done by if they’d lost

I thought we looked a lot more positive and aggressive. Obvs we were far from perfect, the passing was poor at times, but not a disaster


» 21 Feb 2018 06:57

8 home games 6 away left we need to improve at home to stay up !


» 21 Feb 2018 07:41

Second half was embarrassing.


» 21 Feb 2018 08:48

I didn't think it was embarrassing - Forest played ok, despite what the noise is on here. They passed it crisply and pressed us hard. We didn't cope especially well, but they kept battling and on the basis of the first half performance prob deserved a point

I've seen some utterly abysmal performances this season - Hull, Boro, Burton, Brum etc - this wasn't like that


» 21 Feb 2018 08:58

Was pleased to see Reading show some grit and determination last night, throwing bodies in front of the ball. Unfortunately it wasn't quite rewarded but it was a much improved TEAM performance where the players where fighting for eachother, that's exactly what we are going to need to stay safe. Vito was defo MOTM some great saves and you could tell him teammates appreciated them!


» 21 Feb 2018 09:01

Having been at the game (and taking ages to get out of Nottingham last night due to roadworks) I thought I'd share some thoughts.

First half - generally thought we were pretty good but fortunate not to concede due to the offside goal. Plenty of movement, some dodgy long passes by Joey, Bacuna spraying it around and Kelly working hard in midfield. Good strike by Richards with the assist from a Gunter shot/save/rebound. Martin missed an early sitter. We were well worthy of the lead overall and Forest looked a poor team, reminding me a lot of ourselves at home. Home crowd clearly getting frustrated with the sideways/backwards passing.

Second half, they came out of the blocks quicker and pressed higher up the filed. How many times have we seen that happen this season. Last year we would probably have just about hung on to the lead. Thought their 17 looked lively but lacked a bit of quality. We still had a couple of chances. Richards was blowing out of his arse from about 75 minutes onwards and Forest looked to attack down his side a lot after bringing on Matty Cash.

Player comments
Illori - thought he had a good game. One of his best in a Reading shirt. Didn't really looked phased all evening and made a lot of good covering challenges. Probably nicked my MoM and looked pretty solid alongside Moore.

Kelly - good first half, faded in the second

Joey - ran out of legs and let Tomlin get the better of him - gave away about five "fouls" on Tomlin in about 15 minutes. Should have been subbed for Evans earlier with Evans then marking Tomlin closely

Martin - poor. Missed a great chance; looked lazy and had some massive attitude issues when balls weren't played to him. Pity Kermogant wasn't on the bench to bring on at the end and was surprised Stam didn't sub him for JdB

Aluko - he gets a lot of criticism on here but last night he worked his socks off. Little creativity, especially second half, but was always showing for the the ball and tracked back a lot. Their LB pushed on a lot and Aluko did his covering duties well. I'd prefer a right footed winger playing on the right wing if I'm honest but thought he did alright last night (I'm probably now going to be shot down in flames :wink: ).

Richards - good goal and great goal line block early in the second half. HOWEVER, if Blackett had made the same number of mistakes as Richards he would have absolutely castigated on this site. Got caught out of position too often, lost the ball by being too fancy too often and, on another night, could have picked up a second booking. In all fairness he didn't get much support from Barrow though and bombed forward incessantly for the first hour but then rapidly run out of steam. Was actually surprised Stam didn't bring Blackett on for the past 10 minutes or so as we looked certain to concede down our left.

I went with a Leicester supporting work colleague. He enjoyed the first half and thought we played well and actually thought the game was very entertaining in the second half. He really liked Bacuna in the first half, along with Kelly and he's a massive Liam Moore fan.

Overall, feels a bit disappointing to concede another late goal but Forest deserved to get something out of the game. Still hopeful we'll break our home run of form on Saturday.


» 21 Feb 2018 09:09

I’d agree with a lot of what you say about Aluko. I thought he looked far more engaged in the team effort than I’ve seen him, especially in the first half. However he needs to stay out wide and not drift inside so much. Dunno if that is his choice or Stam’s instructions. Either way, it created more problems than it solved.


» 21 Feb 2018 09:14

its been his big problem all season. When he stays out wide, as Barrow does, he looks quite effective. He is an awful CM though, which is where he seems to take himself

But the effort levels were definitely vastly improved

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