Heading into a tough away fixture Reading were looking for their first point, let alone win, of the season – and a point is what they got. After going 2-0 up in the first half with a brace from Jon Dadi Bodvarsson, the Royals were poor in the second half and gifted two penalties that Charlie Mulgrew typically put away. There were some big talking points to come out of the game and here’s how the Reading fans reacted to them...
In his first two seasons at the Madejski Stadium, Paul McShane was a solid performer in the heart of the Royals’ defence, however last season his age really began to show as poor performances led to injuries and his season never really got going.
On Wednesday night it has to be said that he was at fault for both of the Blackburn goals. The first was a ridiculous, poorly timed tackle and the second – albeit with little contact – was needless and reckless. It once again raised the question whether the club captain even gets into our strongest side anymore. Here’s what you had to say about his performance...
Won’t play too many worse teams than Bolton and Blackburn, defensively all over the place. McShane is costing us almost every time he plays. #readingfc— Jake (@jake_rattley) August 22, 2018
Paul McShane is past it, done. Get him out the side #readingfc— Harry (@HarryLight_) August 22, 2018
Updated centre back depth chart;— Andrew Savory (@adsavory) August 22, 2018
- Liam Moore
- Tiago Ilori
- John O'Shea
- Tyler Blackett
- Nigel Gibb
- Ron Grant
- Ron 'Razor' Gourlay
- Paul McShane#readingfc
All these McShane haters have short memories. Have to have a scapegoat, at least it gives Mannone a break #clueless #readingfc— Henry (@WadeWarren4) August 22, 2018
Jon Dadi Bodvarsson
Another player stood out in the 2-2 draw against Blackburn – this time for all the right reasons. Jon Dadi Bodvarsson remains the only player to have scored for Reading in the league so far this season after a brace at Ewood Park, and he has been one of the only bright lights in a so far poor campaign – albeit only four games in.
His importance to Clement’s side so far can be summed up with the fact that without him Reading would be bottom with zero points and zero goals scored. Here’s how you reacted to another solid performance from the 26 year-old target man...
Great half, look on it for the most part. Clement has set them up well and the inclusion of Bodvarsson is the key. Top striker who should be the first name on the teamsheet. #readingfc— Nath St Paul (@NathStPaul) August 22, 2018
Bodvarsson is a very underrated striker. Holds the ball up, gets his head onto the ball, has a decent finish and always gives 100%. #readingfc— Harrison Mitchell (@harrison1871rfc) August 22, 2018
Bodvarsson, Moore and Bacuna were our best three players by a long stretch tonight #ReadingFC— Ollie Kendrick (@OllieKendrick) August 22, 2018
We've looked pretty average, sloppy and been giving the ball away, but fantastic work rate and finish from Bodvarsson! Him and Baldock will definitely have to keep up this intensity and energy #readingfc— Tom Maynard (@ttmaynard) August 22, 2018
The two-goal capitulation
The big talking point, of course, is the second half performance after building such a good lead. In this league, you have to win games from those positions, it’s as simple as that – even more so when you are in and around the bottom of the table. It is something that has to be addressed by Paul Clement in the coming days.
It was almost as if the players had forgotten how to see out the game, which is forgivable considering the last time we were 2-0 up in a Championship game was on the 11th December 2017 against Cardiff (which we also drew 2-2). Here’s how Reading Twitter reacted to that poor second half...
Poor second half performance, we sat too deep, when we should have pushed forward. Poor performances from Baldock, Bacuna and McShane. Good performances from Bodvarrson and Blackett. A point is better than none but it should have been three. Can't lose on Saturday. #readingfc— Harrison Mitchell (@harrison1871rfc) August 22, 2018
Controlled the first half, shocking second half and McShane should be nowhere near the squad let along the team! #readingfc— James (@B3rt1e) August 22, 2018
We invited pressure on in the second half...but McShane's challenges... McNulty and Ilori need to start. Point on the board i suppose. #readingfc— Melvir (@Melvir88) August 22, 2018
#readingfc two up away from home after a disastrous start to the season and their experienced captain gives away a pair of penalties inside the space of 20 second-half minutes to fritter away yet more points. Unbelievable.— George Flood (@GeorgeFlood24) August 22, 2018
Terrible second half. Negative with no desire to win second balls and just hoofing it long. Clement out! #readingfc— James Bywater (@boggy94) August 22, 2018
Still, I believe, it will come good. Before the game, we probably would’ve been happy with a point, but we cannot lose two goal leads like that. Things need to change, I still don’t think Clement knows his best eleven and he needs to figure that out sharpish or else players will become unsettled.
Another really tough away game awaits on Saturday at Aston Villa, and we’re starting to get into must-win territory or else another relegation scrap is well and truly upon us.
Recap the rest of our post-Blackburn coverage with our content stream, and see how we rated the players here: