Date:Saturday February 28 2009
This has been a lousy week both on and off the pitch for the Reds', but this surprising yet deserved win might just put a smile back on a few faces.
The pre match team news wasn't going to make anyone smile, with the inclusion of the hapless Lynch. But for once he acquitted himself well and today had a game free of his usual costly errors. There was some good news though, with the return of the Mousse. It can be no coincidence that his inclusion, made us stronger at the back.
For the first half hour, the game was going to script, as the Royals systematically tore us to bits. They could have been 2 goals up after 6 minutes, with chances from Kebe and Gunnarsson going begging. But the lads held on and got their first sight of goal with an Anderson shot that went just wide.
There was the worrying sight of Tyson being replaced by McCleary on 30 mins, with the striker going off with a groin strain. If he's out for an extended length of time it will only add further weight to the arguement that we should have added during the transfer window. There will be time to argue the toss over that one later I suppose.
The early onslaught from the homeside was well dealt with by the lads and at the break the feeling was of relief, that we had managed to keep them to nil. Forest actually ended the half the stronger, but the Royals will have felt that a couple of their efforts should have given them the lead. Despite Reading's dominance, they only forced Smith to make one decent save.
The second half started the same way as the first one ended, with the Reds' on the attack. Some good work by Moussi, ended with a cracking shot from Cohen that forced a great save from Federici, making the keeper push the ball over the bar. The goal came from a great run by McGugan. He forced his way into the box and rifled the ball into the net to give Forest the lead. It was an unexpected turnaround, but deserved nonetheless.
McGugan was putting in an improved display, following some lacklustre performances of late, but he too went off injured and was replaced by Thornhill. The injuries are stacking up again, just as we were getting a few bodies back. Forest to there credit, kept the homside at bay and began to frustrate them with the same tactics they deployed on us in the first half. It was now the turn of the visitors to waste time and this incensed the home fans as well as the team. Forest ran the clock down well and even almost 6 minutes of injury time wasn't going to be enough to draw Reading level.
This was a vital win today and it has to be said - it wasn't expected. Can we build on it? Time will tell. Next up it's Preston at the City Ground and a reunion for Billy Davies with one of his former clubs. That will be another tough one, as they will be looking to cement their place in the playoff spots. Well done to the lads, but we still need bloody signings.
Date:Saturday February 28 2009
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