Not happy with how poorly Reading played on Saturday afternoon up at Hillsborough? Well, Paul Clement wasn’t any happier. The gaffer slammed a severely below-par Royals performance as Sheffield Wednesday ran out 3-0 winners, his comments making it very clear that he’s expecting major improvements before Ipswich come to Town next Saturday.
In particular, he highlighted a “really poor” second half display that saw the home side extend their 1-0 lead into a 3-0 victory. Fernando Forestieri opened the scoring before the break with a deflected shot, with George Boyd and Forestieri (again) piling on the proverbial misery after the restart. Tyler Blackett’s moment of madness on 76 minutes meant Reading ended the game on 10 men, as they’ve now done on four occasions under Clement.
Speaking to the official site after the game, Clement didn’t hide his frustrations over Reading’s second half collapse, saying:
“I’m disappointed with the manner of the performance. In football, you can lose games – but I wasn’t happy with the way we lost. We have to do better than that.
“Some of the things that I saw in the first half were quite positive, the shape looked quite good and we limited them to very few clear cut chances. We had a couple of chances ourselves before going behind.
“I came in at half time and discussed with the players that if we played better in certain situations, then we could get back into the game.
”The first half was quite even, but in the second half, the manner of their two goals, the nature of the defending for those two goals was really poor. Then we’ve got a massive uphill task and at 3-0 down it’s difficult get anything out of the game.”
With Ipswich Town up next, Reading have a great opportunity to get a big win on the board that could seal their place in the division. However, Clement accepted that his side needs to up their game and take the initiative if they’re to beat next Saturday’s opposition.
”We’ve got to buck our ideas up. Because if we play like we did in the second half [against Wednesday], we’re going to be in trouble.
”We have to stop relying on results elsewhere, we have to get our own game in order. Games are running out and we have to get a win. Because if you’re relying on other results you’re playing a really dangerous game.
“And we have to move on quickly. We’ve got two games to go and we need to win one of those games.
”Ipswich is a massive game next weekend and the players have to turn it around in front of our home fans next weekend. We’ve been doing well at home since I’ve been here, we’ve won two and drawn one and next Saturday at home will be vital.
”We need to leave the disappointing performance here. We’ve had words in the dressing room already about the manner of the defeat and now everything is about focusing on Ipswich next week.”