Reading's away form has never been what you call consistent, and facing winless Brentford at Griffin Park, many would have pretty much banked on a #Bees win, as generally we help struggling teams (Villa last season anyone!). However we got a draw, and welcomed Premier League Swansea to the Mad Stad, fielding what was nearly a full strength team. Before the game with a Bayern Munich loan signing in Renato Sanches and a £12m signing of Bony, you could argue that Reading would have done well to get anything out of this game.
What we got out of the Swansea match is pretty much what we deserved, but I wasn’t overly impressed with them as a Premier League team. Indeed in the first half there was little to choose from. A quick scuffle at halftime livened the place up, which previously had bordered on a library, and then in the second half you have to say that Swansea took the first goal well and then got a little lucky with the second, but as the phrase goes – you make your own luck.
So, on to the Twittersphere and media to see what reaction was out there.
Oh we know how this feels...
Never a truer word said in jest.
Could be worse boys and girls , you could be a Birmingham fan #brentfordfc— chris whittart (@fatwhit5) September 16, 2017
Think there might be a few clubs quoting this later this season!
It's the year 2056. AI robots now rule the Earth. Humans have figured out interstellar travel. Brentford still haven't won. #brentfordfc— Adrian Lee (@adrizrace44) September 16, 2017
The grass isn't always greener!
Slim pickings for this one and the bad side of football appeared in the Daily Mail, and rather than the game they focussed on some over exuberant "fans" deciding it would be a good idea (not), to let a smoke bomb off on a train to the game. This is something football and Reading can do without.
So, back to the football game itself and Sky carry their usual highlights package of 1 min 24, and their report mainly centres around the Bees failing to hold onto the lead. Still it’s worth watching for a cracking penalty from Liam Kelly.
West London Sport focus a lot around Dean Smith having a good old whinge about the referee, saying two tackles from behind went unpunished when our players were already on yellows. As a general rule you have to say that the standard of officiating this season is probably at an all time low, and I feel is something that the FA need to address.
The BBC for once aren’t completely down on us, they reckon we improved after the break, a few Reading fans will point to that not being an overly hard thing to achieve, and again they focus on the comments from Dean Smith about the referee. My only concern is that Stam seems to be playing soundbite bingo after the games, but at least he is honest enough to say that we probably didn’t deserve much more.
Jonathan's match report over at GetReading is much improved from his last outing this week and gives a good and just report of the game, saying that the draw was a correct result and you also get his video verdict of the game.
Really struggling with this viewpoint
Who are you?
I, for one didn't think he was worth the £36m Bayern Munich paid for him
Looking at their defense last night this stat is shocking
Swansea City have now conceded only 1 goal this season in 450' of football away from the Liberty (1-4 win vs MK Dons). #Swans— mike tumulty (@mtumulty) September 19, 2017
Talk about getting carried away...
Let's book our tickets to Wembley #Swans— Al (@AlexxPan) September 19, 2017
One way of looking at it!
Nice assist ref. Good man. #Swans— Ben Jones-Groves (@5characters_) September 19, 2017
Bit more coverage for this one, but then you would expect that being a Premier League team. The Daily Mail actually give us a bit of credit, saying that we settled the easier and Popa and Swift both wasted encouraging chances. They also say we were "spirited", personally I would prefer the phrase "effective" if we could actually score a goal!
The Irish independent call it a comfortable win for Swansea, once again saying that we started off brightly and also mentioned the "brawl" (really?) at halftime and that the first half was dour.
Wales Online reckon it was a comfortable win, with the Swans being able to deal with our early enthusiasm, and that their defensive record is pretty impressive at the moment. They focus on a couple of their players, reckoning that Sanches is "over thinking" and trying too hard to rediscover his form.
Over at the BBC and they go one step further and call the second goal "controversial" (or they could just read the rules of the game!) and Sanches impressed with the ball (hmmmm). However they do mention that we were very much in the game, right up till they scored – amazing that.
To finish off with GetReading and Jonathan makes a valid point, we were really good right up to having to do something with the ball, and lacked a clinical edge. He also mentions the "bust up" and is also the only outlet to mention that Fer got a yellow for it, even though every other paper said no cards were produced (credit to Jon).
Oh it’s hard to be a positive Reading fan at the moment. The last few results haven’t been what we have wanted or expected, and I dare say the coaching team are somewhat bewildered as to our current form.
Yes a lot can be asked around why we didn’t play a centre forward and why we did carry on with the false nine experiment, which really for me isn’t working. If you're Spain you can pull it off, but we don’t have the world class players at our disposal to do this.
My biggest worry (and I tweeted this last night) is the awful atmosphere - or lack thereof - at the Madejski at the moment. Yes we turn up expecting the team to entertain us, and in some respects rightly we can complain of how can we get excited when there is little to get excited about? But, can we truly sit there and accept the announcer going "thanks for your support and backing" when there is more get up and go in the local cemetery?
We have to do our part regardless of the tempo the team is playing at and give the boys something back. As The Secret Footballer said "it’s easy to play as an away side when the fans are polite" – maybe we should make the Mad Stad a place where teams don’t want to come rather than a nice warm environment for teams to show up and not have to worry about the crowd? Just a thought but we are in a partnership with the team, maybe we should look at ourselves as fans and not just demand it?
Onto Hull, how about we start there and see if we, as fans can do our part and see if it makes a difference!