This was arguably the biggest game of the season, if not the most important in recent times, to keep us in the Championship. With the chance to get three points ahead of Rotherham, it was important to get the win, but the two teams both took a point with the Royals remaining out of the bottom three - just.
Everything was in place, the fans were ready and the Royals took the lead in the first half to settle the nerves. Rotherham equalised late on, but Reading would go on to rue the late misses to not take all three points.
Jose Gomes was frustrated that we couldn’t put away our chances and spoke to the official club website and Football.London.
Gomes on the result
“Against teams that play like Rotherham, even if you are a goal ahead, you cannot be satisfied. From corners, free-kicks, throw-ins – they can create something. So we have to try to score a second. It’s one more lesson to take with us into the future.
”We played for the three points today. But in some moments of the game, we tried just to protect against our opponents’ strengths. We knew that it was important for us to get the three points against a direct opponent. In the end, results like this against the teams around us can decide things.
”And we created more than enough goal situations to win this game. But we didn’t win it. In fact, we had a chance on the counter attack just before they scored, Nelson slipped, possession turned over and they got the goal which gave them the draw.”
Gomes on players missing chances
“I am not happy with my players when they miss a clear goal situation. After the very tough previous game where we suffered a lot the way they played they really deserved the three points.
“We felt on the pitch the fantastic environment from the fans during the game and it could be a different hand if we finished with three points in the pocket.
“It’s an important and big lesson for everybody, especially the players. If you are winning 1-0 you must go on playing and try to score a second. We tried but not with the same intensity.”
Gomes on bringing on O’Shea
“Yakou was tired and I could use Ovie in this position. He’s able to stop the crosses from the left so the full back didn’t cross. Yakou is one important player for the way we organise our defensive set pieces and to replace him at that moment in the game, I felt if we could control this direct game better.
“O’Shea is also strong in the air, that’s the reason (I brought him on). We could keep the team stronger. After O’Shea played, we controlled the game for a good period and we were nearer to score the second goal than Rotherham. We didn’t, Nelson slipped at they scored.”
Gomes on whether he should have brought on Harriott or Barrow sooner
“It’s easy to talk after the game. During the game, one minute before I changed McCleary, he created a fantastic action with his sprint. The idea was to put a bit more offensive energy on.
“If you asked me if it could be before - only Yakou really showed that he was tired. All the others were doing well. Before I changed Ovie, he made a great action as well with his shot. With their energy Callum and Barrow played well, they helped the team when we asked them.”
Gomes on the relegation battle
“But we are still alive, we have a point more and we must prepare properly for the next match and try to win it.”
Gomes on the players’ reaction after Sheffield United defeat
”The players reacted well after the previous result. And they showed enough quality to win the game. But we are prepared for it to be a fight until the end.
”I am sure other teams could get involved in the fight in the coming weeks.”
Gomes on Ipswich next weekend
”Now, our focus turns to Ipswich next weekend. We were closer to winning the game than Rotherham were today, but we have to win those games.
”We were very near to getting all three points but we have to put the ball in the back of the net. In the situations that we create, we must score. We have to find the solutions to win the next game.
“We must use everything that’s already happened to be better in the future and the future is Saturday. We will try to play to win.”