It’s not been a great month of football for Reading fans, but hey, we need to work out a player of the month. It’s a month that has seen just a single victory and four losses - the ones at West Brom and Swansea being our heaviest league defeats of the season so far. Even the 3-1 home win over Millwall felt undeserved, with a strong rearguard action seeing the Royals over the line. Otherwise there’s been losses to QPR (1-0) and Birmingham City (2-1).
This season has already seen you give Andy Yiadom and Jon Dadi Bodvarsson awards for player of the month - August and September respectively - but who deserves the gong for October? There’s been little enjoyment for the fans, and few individual performances have been worthy of that much credit. In fact, only three squad members have average ratings of at least 6/10 for October, so they’re the only guys we’ve included in this month’s poll.
To help you decide which player was best, we’ve included the month-long average for our player ratings and any relevant man of the match awards (as voted by you). Make sure to fill out the poll at the bottom of the page.
Average rating: 6.67 (3 appearances); Man of the Match awards: Millwall (1st), Birmingham City (3rd), Swansea City (1st)
Who’d have thought Anssi Jaakkola would be in the running for a player of the month award a few weeks ago? We were all shocked to see the big Finn be handed a starting spot against Millwall, but he repaid that show of faith (we’ll ignore the fact that Sam Walker and Vito Mannone were injured) with a vintage goalkeeping performance.
That rightly saw him take a man of the match award, which he also achieved in the 2-1 loss at Swansea City. In fact, his monthly rating of 6.67/10 is the highest monthly average for any player this season, excluding Saeid Ezatolahi’s 7/10 for his opening two matches.
Average rating: 6.0 (4 appearances); Man of the Match awards: QPR (1st), West Bromwich Albion (1st)
A slightly weaker month than we’ve come to expect from Tiago Ilori, but to be fair he started it strongly. He was one of the better performers in the 4-1 thrashing at West Brom, also doing pretty well against QPR a few days earlier. However, his standards slipped later on in October, culminating in him being dropped for the 2-0 loss at Swansea City for John O’Shea.
Average rating: 6.0 (5 appearances); Man of the Match awards: Millwall (2nd), Birmingham City (1st), Swansea City (3rd)
The Ivorian had his best month in a Reading shirt, scoring three times in the league to make him the current in-form striker. In Jon Dadi Bodvarsson’s absence he started up top against QPR (on his own) and West Brom (with Marc McNulty) before firing the Royals to a crucial victory with a brace against Millwall - his first for the club - another goal coming at Birmingham City.
Even when he’s not scored, Meite has still earned praise for his typical work ethic, a trait that contributed to him being awarded a new four-year contract at the start of the month.
Vote for your player of the month in the poll below, or through this link.