This game’s column is a little abridged as the bar’s calling me for New Years Eve! The good thing about the Christmas period is that the games come thick and fast with no time to catch your breath, the players to train or the people that work on social media enough time to get reports and columns out!
Editor’s note: tell me about it.
However, Reading returned to action promptly after a nine-man loss at Millwall to take on one of the league’s form teams in
the fake hoops QPR. To give them credit, after a horrendous opening four games Rangers have rebounded and actually are playing some decent footie and getting some good results. They were unbeaten over the Christmas period with creditable wins against Middlesbrough and Ipswich Town at home, and a very good away win at Nottingham Forest. That’s propelled QPR up the table, and a win against the true hoops would have put them in the play-off positions.
However, with the home side missing some players due to the Asia Cup, Reading took advantage and got a good point away from home. The general consensus is that we deserved the point - if not all three - as we played some football that hasn’t been seen played by a Reading team for a long time.
After the match the QPR faithful vented at a couple of the players in midfield, and Steve McClaren for not making subs. Strange but hey, when you get success the slightest thing can be disastrous. Try being second from bottom guys...
Gotta love mascots
I think every Reading fan is in agreement
Few observations from today #qpr : thought Reading were better than their League position suggests, though probably a result of not really having a focal point up front who could finish. Wells has made that transition of our side.— Neil Rudge (@neilrudge1) December 29, 2018
C’mon admit it, you’re getting excited...
He’s good at that and also shot-stopping
Awe, fake hoops getting shown how to play the game?
Fakes! Just remember who had the hoops first, copy cats
Frustrating afternoon. It's clear why that midfield isn't first choice and a better team than the Fakes would've punished us. Some great saves from Lumley, love the way he's coming on. McLaren has a selection headache though for Villa that's for sure. Not hopeful for that #qpr— Steve S (@RuislipR) December 29, 2018
One tweet that I never thought I would see, Sone!
The Gomes reign has started off well. A difficult game over at Millwall could have ended up with any result, then following that up to a visit to the league’s in-form side wasn’t ideal. However, there is a sense of positivity on Twitter and around the club; whether that’s new manager syndrome or actually deserved is another matter, but I will take it.
The team that was put out on Saturday opened a few eyes with the inclusion of Sone Aluko, who hasn’t made a huge amount of friends in the Reading fanbase. However, by all accounts this could be a new Aluko with him getting the highest score that I have seen him get on TTE’s player ratings for a long time. I mean Aluko in with a shout of the MOTM award - wow.
That’s the effect a new manager can have. Some players just simply respond better to a new direction. John Swift is another one that seems to like the new regime, with him having one of his better games at QPR. Be warned though - for every player that improves, others will get worse. None have been visible so far but it’s bound to happen.
So all we need now is this rumoured £50m to be handed to Gomes, sign some decent players and Bob’s your auntie. We’ll be unbeaten for the second half of the season and gain promotion (I mean it’s not like we have done this before or anything… OK, we didn’t have quite as bad a position then!)
The last thing from me this year is to pray that we get three points on New Year’s Day and wish you all a happy, safe and healthy 2019. Keep the faith and let’s get behind the boys (and Reading FC Women’s team who are showing us all what can be achieved!)