LEAGUE DIVISION TWO
LUTON TOWN 3 READING 1
|Scorers: Caskey||Date: 22 January 2000|
|Team: Howie, Bernal, Primus, Polston, Gray (Nicholls), Smith (Evers) Caskey, Parkinson, Gurney, Forster, Scott (Williams).|
by Classic Gold radio.
In recent weeks every Reading fan has been consoling themselves with the thought that things can only get better. Unfortunately it looks like things are going to get a whole lot worse before they improve as we move closer and closer towards the exit to Division Three. This was our thirteenth match without league victory and there were no signs we're any closer to ending that run. This defeat means Reading slip one more place - to twenty second - as each week passes the trouble just gets deeper. It's hard to imagine Second Division survival right now, and relegation will have very very serious consequences on the club. This performance was the same as any other - we had no ideas of how to score goals - which will always prove fatal. The score line may be slightly misleading as Reading were always in the game and could have shared the points if they'd turned possession into goals. However the eventual outcome was no surprise at all - Luton had done all they'd needed to do to take all three points.
Luton had three key players missing through suspension as the game kicked off, and although they're pushing for a play-off place, this is the kind of game we need to at least get a point from if we have any chance of survival. So it was promising when Reading got off to a good start, but not promising that we failed to create enough chances. The first half was pretty even but Luton were always looking sharper up front. Reading weren't doing too much wrong in the first half of the field, but in the second they were slow and showing a complete lack of desire in front of goal. We've forgotten how to put the round thing into the back of the net. Keith Scott really should have completed the task when presented with the ball on the six yard box. He took too long and was tackled. But apart from that we weren't carving open any clear cut opportunities - with no final ball being provided to the front men. As usual it was just the couple of long shots, this time from Gurney, that weren't threatening enough. Luton on the other hand took their chance to take the lead, after about twenty minutes. They won a free kick just outside the box, and worked it nicely into the box where it was headed down and into the back of the net past Howie. So, 0-1 at half time.
Reading provided themselves with the perfect chance to get something out of the game on the hour with a rare piece of intellegent running from Darren Caskey. The ball was quickly played upfield from Howie to Gray to Evers who provided Caskey with the ball. Caskey somehow managed to beat the offside trap, although it might have been a generous decision to let him run on by the referee, and Caskey strolled forward onside. Caskey, the only man that seems to score for the Royals nowdays, rounded the keeper and drove home into an empty net for his thirteenth goal of the season. 1-1. For a brief moment Reading looked good for a draw.... if only we'd pushed forward and gone for the win rather than settling for that which was always going to be a mistake.
Five minutes later and it looked like it was 1-2. Primus was beaten on the wing and the ball crossed, played down and driven post Howie in the Reading goal. Fortunately it was disallowed for hand ball when he'd contolled the cross. Not that it made any difference. Just a couple of minutes after that and it was 1-2. The ball was played in, the Luton forward had all the time in the world with no challenge coming in, and it was an easy goal well scored.
With time running out Reading started playing further forward, slightly. This gave Keith Scott another golden chance to score after being set up by Caskey. This time he hit it right at the keeper when he should have blasted it into the Luton net. Reading were again having most of the play as time started to run out. We went more attacking in formation to hunt down the equaliser with Gray leaving the pitch to be replaced by Nicholls - but it didn't make much difference as Luton just played deeper - packing their defence to maintain their lead. Reading put on a bit of pressure but didn't really know what to do at the end of it all. As the game entered injury time Reading continued to push players forward leaving it wide open at the back - it had to be done. So it was no surprise when the ball was cleared long to find their forward in acres of space to run on goal and fire past Howie. 1-3, and it was all over.
Post Match Opinions
played fairly good football for the first twenty minutes, and for the
second half after Luton had retaken the lead. However, we made awful mistakes,
especially one where a Luton player just ran through the whole of our
defence but then messed up the shot. Keith Scott looked totally incapable
of scoring. Nicky Forster didn't look worth anything like 650,000, as
when he got the ball he couldn't get through the defence.
wondered why Reading have been battling out draw after draw and conceding
so few goals but at the same time scoring so few as well? Well the answer
was shown with a practical demonstation this afternoon by the Royals.
We defended well, Howie made some good saves, BUT when we got the ball
in midfield we passed it side-ways, we stopped, everyone looked around,
we passed it side-ways again until we were dispossessed, and the cycle
started over. The strike force of Scott and Forster looked on in anticipation
but found themselves going back into midfield to try and get a touch.
another disasterous result, action needs to be taken. First thing Monday
morning the dismissal of the management (or resignation). Secondly, the
instant appointment of Mark McGhee before he signs for someone else which
all supporters know will happen somewhere before the end of the month.
After listening to Classic Gold on Saturday it was quite clear a high
percentage of fans will respond to his return by coming back to support
their team. I think his return would put at least 9,000 bums on seats
- a great improvement in just one game. I myself and six friends have
gone from watching every home game and at least ten away games to only
watching two home games this season,and at the moment have no wishes to
return, until the return of the Mac!
am sick of people bleating on about Mark McGhee, agreed he was successful
at Reading after a decidedly dodgy start. Since leaving Reading his lack
of success has been blatantly obvious despite spending huge sums of money
at Wolves, so why does anybody think he would succeed now with our current
bunch of donkeys. Also why do we think he would be loyal to Reading now
as he obviously didn't give a shit when he buggered off before.
agree with Simon's pre Luton comments, most supporters who would welcome
Mark McGhee back to the fold. Why can't John Madejski berry the hatchet
and bring him back. His presence will bring back those disillusioned supporters
and reduce the monthly financial losses, and secure a place next year
in this division. If not the club will be relegated and the financial
burden will undoubtedly increase further.
heard "Pards" on the radio this morning (Monday) and he said he realised
that if we don't get a win quickly, he believes his position will be "no
longer tenable" 13 games without a league win means he has already crossed
that line. Pardew was never a "Top Flight" player and I cannot think of
an instance where a mediocre player turned out to be a brilliant Manager.
do so many people keep calling for Mark McGhee to return? He is one of
the architects of our current plight. He did little on his own (remember
Neale Cooper, Ray Wallace and other well judged signings?) and the team
only began to improve with the appointment of Colin Lee. If he is so good,
why has he been sitting at home whilst a number of management opportunities
have gone past? Why has Wolves form improved since he left and Lee was
allowed to continue on his own? Who scrapped the reserves and destroyed
the youth system at the club? Whose team was based around youth players
inherited from the regime of Ian Branfoot? (This much reviled manager
has gone on to be director of the highly successful Sunderland academy)
do something Mr Mad ,this cannot go on Messrs, or should it be messers,
Pardew and Goodman obviously have no idea how to turn things around the
results if anything are worse than when Burns and Bonner were in charge.
They do not seem willing to try anything new just the same stereotyped
way of moving sideways . Bring in new ideas McGhee,would at least offer
some new thinking Mr Mad please forget the past its the future that counts
we really going to have the best Ground in the Third Division?
a quick note to say we are terrible and my opinion on why:
watched Reading through thick and thin for the last 15 years many of which
as a season ticket holder I can honestly say this is the worst team I
have ever seen and like many fans I am seriously considering giving up
on the club as I am sure I can find a better use for the £1000 + spent
on this club home and away.
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