1. Nigel won't rush the kids.
Going into this game, many fans were hoping to see a fresh-faced line-up that could bed into first-team football with a game against minor opposition. Nigel Adkins, meanwhile, had other plans. A very strong line-up saw 2 changes- both of which could be construed as 'improving' the Wigan starting XI- and academy products were forced to watch from the bench. The thinking behind this is clear; don't rush the kids into pressure situations, and you don't risk them slipping up and knocking back their confidence and progression.
2. The kids are, however, alright.
Despite Adkins not risking the game by bringing on any youngsters, Craig Tanner was deployed at the relatively safe 2-0 scoreline. For a 5 minute run-out, the debutant was rather impressive as he pocketed a clinical finish to regain the Royals' 2-goal advantage. What impressed me about Tanner, was that in his first touches he did not try to beat defenders and do something memorable, but he looked up and played the simple pass. That maturity will have no doubt impressed the manager, and that sort of patience paid off with the academy product sealing the win moments later.
3. The Thais are, well and truly, in town.
It has been great to see the images of Samrit Bunditkitsada at our early season games, and they were added to by fellow Thai consortium member Sasima Srivikorn sat next to SJM in the directors box last night. Smiling and waving to the crowds, her presence was felt to an even greater extent when one turned to the back of the programme. An interesting birthday message to the Queen of Thailand, also appearing on the big screen, shows the new era of Thai influence at the Mad Stad has certainly begun. Well, we are The Royals after all...
4. Are late goals going to become routine?
The infamous 'Reading time' goals grabbed in the last minutes of games under Brian McDermott fired us to promotion, and following our late double at Wigan and again last night, late goals are becoming a feature of our game. Sadly, this is at both ends. Needless to say, Wigan's 94th minute equaliser was a tad more damaging than a Newport consolation, but let's hope that is that for our late'n'lazy conceding.
5. The 2nd Round looks tasty
With the draw taking place later tonight, Reading fans continue to search for that illusive derby game against anyone we can justify as a 'local rival'. Swindon, Oxford, Brighton, Crawley, Bournemouth, MK Dons, Portsmouth, Watford, QPR and Southampton are all in the pot for the next round. A nearby away game will certainly be on the top of the list for many fans.