Vito Mannone: 6
Vito didn’t have a whole heap to do apart from pick the ball out of his net twice. He made two smart saves, and at times did try to release players quickly with long throws out. May possibly feel he could have reached the first goal.
Chris Gunter: 5
Did he do any better than Yiadom would have done (at right back)? Probably not. I find it hard to ever say anything new about Gunter as everyone by this point knows exactly what he can do.
He got forward more in the first half than second, and overall put in a few excellent crosses which on another day Jon Dadi Bodvarsson (injured on the day) might have attacked. Also put in some shockers though. Didn’t do enough in the second half on the overlap.
Andy Yiadom: 5
Pretty solid for most of the game. Had a lot to deal with throughout the match, as Wednesday’s main attacks did seem to come more down our left than right. Currently looking like our shrewdest summer signing - but that’s not a high bar.
Like Gunter, energy faded somewhat in the second period and didn’t get forward as much. Blackett’s crossing was missed at times (can’t believe I just typed that).
Liam Moore: 6
Well he scored, with a clean, powerful and well-directed header from a corner. Apart from that, it wasn’t his best day. Part of a defence that conceded two from fairly central positions, both of which could have been blocked by either centre back if they’d been alert enough. Found Nuhiu a real handful, but then which centre back in the Championship wouldn’t?
Tiago Ilori: 5
He’s clearly a better option than McShane right now, but definitely still plenty to work on. Wednesday were still able to get through us with far too much ease, and I do feel he could do much more in terms of stepping out from the back.
David Meyler: 4
Didn’t screen the back four effectively, didn’t get around the pitch enough to affect Wednesday in any significant way, and both goals came from positions where the holding midfielder should have been reading the game and snuffing out danger.
Also didn’t move (either himself or the ball) forward quickly enough when the opportunity presented. I understand why he started, but are we now saying that he’s currently the best centre midfield option we’ve got? I do hope not.
Leandro Bacuna: 5
Produced a well-flighted, inviting ball in for Moore’s goal. Delivery from set-pieces in general did cause a few problems, but I get the feeling he can do better though. Apart from that, average performance in every way.
Passed sideways a lot, I suspect he found the pressure of being the supposed creative influence in the midfield too much at times. I still think he’s got enough natural ability to be a key performer though.
Modou Barrow: 5
An off-day for Mo. Had one of the only clear-cut chances that Reading created apart from the goal, but shot too close to the keeper. Didn’t test out Wednesday’s fullbacks anywhere near enough, and just offered a mere shadow of the threat to defences we know he has in him. His reaction to being subbed won’t impress Clement either.
Sone Aluko: 5
Hard to recall any moment in particular which got the crowd excited, which from a supposedly creative player is a bit of a concern. One wonders how long Clement will tolerate such anonymity.
Yakou Meite: 4
Yes, this is harsh, but then Yakou Meite is an infuriating player. Strong, quick, skillful, with a powerful shot and a neat touch - everyone can see he possesses these attributes, it’s just that he didn’t show them anywhere near enough.
Chief amongst the vast host of things he needs to work on are decision making and tracking back. A vague sense of game awareness/intelligence wouldn’t go amiss either.
Sam Baldock: 5
He’s clearly been a very good striker at this level, but if he once relied on his pace and nip over the first couple of yards to get away from defenders, he’s going to have to add other strings to his bow because those attributes have now deserted him.
Probably our most creative player who started, and I reckon he’s still got goals in him this year - it’s just about how to use him and who to partner him with.
Liam Kelly: 5
Couldn’t have been any worse than Meyler, and wasn’t. I’m still really not sure he should be starting games anytime soon, but he did work harder than normal today, and actually won both a header and a tackle - an improvement on recent performances. Ended up just clipping long balls into the Wednesday box, which didn’t prove effective at all.
Josh Sims: 6
He looks at first glance to be a half-decent acquisition - pacy, a tricky runner and ever willing to chase lost causes. The way things are going, that probably elevates him to a starting position, given our absence of other creative options.
As with most of our wingers, he will clearly be better when a game’s stretched (eg when we’re not losing), but still probably worth a shot from a starting position.
Marc McNulty: 5
Some players will score goals at any level - Le Fondre was one, Shane Long another, but nothing I’ve seen so far from McNulty suggests he will immediately be another. He was actually bright after coming off the bench, and may well adjust over time to the pace and strength of Championship football (up against six-foot centre backs he’s got no chance), but just looked off the pace to a large extent.
When he did get the ball he showed a few neat touches, and harried Wednesday’s defence constantly. He may lack plenty of attributes which the best strikers have, but character and hunger to be involved certainly aren’t among them.
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