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Brian McDermott Approval Rating - February 2016

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Are you happy with the job Brian McDermott is doing as Reading manager? Vote now.

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We've been running these polls for a year now, with the first taking place almost exactly a year ago when Steve Clarke had settled into the hotseat at the Mad Stad. Of course by the end of his tenure, opinions were rather less positive...

So now, with a new manager at the helm in Brian McDermott, it's time to get back to business, and let us know how happy you are with how he's performing.

Positives

The main positive to come out of Steve Clarke's sacking and McDermott's appointment is the apparent happiness around the club. Without getting too in depth on matters nobody can ever fully get to the bottom of, the facts are these: Clarke probably burnt his bridges when he chose to spoke to Fulham, whilst Brian is a Reading man through and through; one who many believe was harshly sacked by Anton Zingarevich in March 2013. Whilst the old adage says to never go back, it seems most were happy to give him another chance - comfort is back at the Madejski Stadium.

And Brian has wasted no time whatsoever using the knowledge garnered in those intervening years as a scout at Arsenal, bringing in a number of players to bolster the squad. George Evans comes highly rated from Manchester City, Deniss Rakels has a good scoring record in the Polish Ekstraklasa (though McDermott has admitted that the owners were a large influence in this signing), and Yann Kermorgant arrives with cult hero status from just about every club he's stayed at during his career. Sure, there hasn't been a marquee signing or one which puts the Royals back on the map, but that's been the way of this club for years. The mercurial Nick Blackman was sold for a handsome fee, and despite this money not being fully re-invested, it's good to see that replacements have arrived.

It's also become near-tradition in recent seasons that Reading enjoy a long cup run, and that seems to be the case this year too. Last season it was Wembley, this year... well, the route is opening up. Into the fifth round and facing either Peterborough United or West Bromwich Albion at home, the gods seem to keep smiling on us. And those two ties at the Madejski have certainly been thrilling, with nine Reading goals in two games to get hopes up once again that we can create history. It remains to be seen whether McDermott can nurture that cup form into league points, but we're enjoying the ride once again.

Negatives

Well, not much has changed... yet. The league form is still indifferent (two wins, two draws and four defeats in eight matches) and no real upturn in the playing style or positivity on the field. Consistency isn't there yet, of results or performances - for example, a great 1-1 draw at promotion-chasing Derby County followed up by a demoralising 1-0 defeat at MK Dons. Eleven games in charge and not once have we had consecutive wins. You've got to give Brian time, obviously, but from the outset it seems he's got a big job transforming the malaise that has engulfed Reading for a number of years now. We know he tends to get better as the season wears on from experience - let's hope that's still the case in his second spell.

In fact it's not only across the season that Brian tends to do better as time passes. In six of the last seven matches, and in eight out of his eleven so far, Reading have conceded first and had to try and recover a victory. Luckily the Royals have tended to show that battling resolve to get back into games but it's concerning that the team seems to be dominated early doors, as if the tactics are wrong.

Indeed, McDermott has also made half-time tactical substitutions in three matches already - suggesting an admission that things are going badly wrong. Even the good results have come after poor starts - let's not forget it took a red card to swing things Reading's way in the Huddersfield Town FA Cup replay, 2-0 down after 20 minutes and looking like a long evening before the Terriers were reduced to ten. Again, a new manager needs time, but it's a worrying trend if it were to continue.

So how do you rate Brian's first six weeks back in the Madejski Stadium hotseat? Give us your rating below (5 = highest, 1 = lowest) and let us know your thoughts below.