What. A. Win! The Royals scored a last minute winner to pick up a massive three points against Ipswich at Portman Road. We don’t like to do things the easy way do we! But after Ipswich equalised with 10 minutes left, it looked as though Nelson Oliverira’s first-half goal would just earn a point for the Royals, but Mo Barrow scored a last minute winner to keep us out of the relegation area, just one point behind Millwall and three points behind next weeks opponents Wigan.
Jose Gomes was one happy man at the end of the game and spoke to both the official club website and Football.London.
Gomes on the performance
“We played very well in difficult conditions. We didn’t come here expecting an easy game and we are always fighting with strong, tough teams who can play direct football.
“We suffered a bit in the second half, but we created more than enough situations to win and we deserved what we got.
“When you press high, they play long balls into our box – and then we have to be there to win the first ball, and the second one as well. We made one mistake and they scored. It wasn’t necessary to suffer so much because we had chances to score more in both halves.
“But it was really important the way that our players fought like a team. Everybody helped each other. You can’t control the game completely; sometimes the opponents put the ball in the box and we have to fight for it. We did well.
“I recognise that sometimes these things are difficult and the ball will bounce a lot – so we have to win the challenges and the second balls. It was a real Championship game. I told my players that if I die in England, they are responsible! My heart rate at some times… and I was full of emotion.
“I suppose that when we conceded, some people perhaps stopped believing that it was possible for us to win. But like a team, together, we kept going and creating situations to score, and we made it count. So I am very proud of my players. They deserve it.”
Gomes on picking up three points
“The points were important, especially when we checked at the end of the game and saw that Rotherham had got three points also. Now we have a bigger distance from Bolton, and we’re nearer to Wigan.”
Gomes on getting on confidence going forward
“When you win you get more confidence and more energy, no doubt. If you do the positive things and feel you are doing the positive things then you receive the points for that.
“It’s better than just getting one point or losing. Not only regarding the physical, mental and tactical things, regarding the team spirit which we showed with the same 11 - I could count on the same 11 for the first time since I’ve been here.
”The same players gave a very good answer - they really fought and helped each other. Sometimes a small mistake happened like the Ipswich goal but they didn’t give up.
“They fought again to try and score and created situations with Swift, Barrow and Meite so they deserved it for the way they play - they deserved the three points.”
Gomes on injuries
“Oliveira and Martinez are both injured. Martinez was injured in the warm-up and he felt something. During the game he felt it again - his calf. He said he wanted to play so we’ll see how he recovers during the week.”
Gomes on the other teams in the relegation scrap
“The goal is to try and beat Wigan and bring other teams into the mix. Hopefully we can win. The other teams have tough games but we must put the focus on our game - things in our control and be better in the next game.
“If we keep this fighting spirit I think we will get good things in the next game.”
Gomes on the fans
“Our fans were amazing, almost 1,500 were here and they were fantastic. They deserved those three points.
“Since I arrived, they have been amazing. They follow us everywhere and they support us – they don’t just sit there and watch, they make noise and support the team. They deserved this.”