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Clarke: Players Need To Step Up And Start Scoring

A 0-3 defeat to Nottingham Forest continued Reading's barren run of form at home, but what did the manager have to say about the match? Sophie analyses the latest quotes from Steve Clarke.

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Another disappointing home defeat saw a much deflected Steve Clarke at the end of the game. Although the performance was a lot better than what we've seen at the Madejski for a while, two wonder goals and some poor defending saw the Royals lose 3-0 against in-form Nottingham Forest.

Clarke told the Official Club website, "I thought first half we were really good, as well as we've played for a long time. We had a good control of the game, created two really good chances to score but didn't take them and suffered for it in the second half."

"We’re not a team who creates a lot of chances, so when they come we have to be clinical. At 1-0 we had another good chance to equalise. We keep getting into good goal-scoring positions but at the moment it doesn't look like we’re going to score any goals and that is a big concern for us."

The team currently have little confidence at home. The once 'Fortress Madejski', where away teams dreaded to visit, is now becoming a place where teams can pick up three points. Clarke added: "If you’re playing in a team that’s full of confidence, like Forest are, then we probably would have got a finish but we’re lacking a little bit of confidence and personality in the team at the moment."

"I’m sorry for the supporters because I felt today they tried to get right behind us. It’s a disappointing result."

"We need some people to step up to the mark and start scoring goals. There are goals in the team, but there obviously aren't enough.

"It’s not just a problem over the last 10 weeks, it’s a season-long problem. It’s something that we have to try and address but it’s difficult to get a lot of work in on the training ground. The offensive players have to step up to the mark a little bit."

One of the main things that has kept the team together this season is the support of the fans, and that was no change yesterday. It was one of the best atmospheres at home this season, and it didn't go unnoticed either: "I’m sorry for the supporters because I felt today they tried to get right behind us. It’s a disappointing result."

Ahead of what is a huge week for the football club, before our minds cast to a little FA cup Quarter Final tie at Bradford in six days’ time, we have a huge game against Bolton on Tuesday evening, three points being a must. Clarke added: "The players are aware of the position they’re in in the table and of their responsibilities to the club and fans, that we get away from the bottom of the table as quickly as possible.

"Bolton on Tuesday is about going out and getting some points on the board. We’re still not safe from relegation and you keep looking over your shoulder. I don’t know if the players worry about it but I know I certainly do. I keep reminding the players that they have a responsibility to the football club and the supporters to get the points required and we’ll try to get some more points on Tuesday."