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Middlesbrough Fans Verdict: Royals Lose But Confirm Safety

Reading travelled up to Middlesbrough all but safe after the point at home to West Brom on Monday afternoon, and it was mathematically confirmed on Saturday even though Reading couldn’t get a result themselves.

So, there we go. Another season in the Championship officially confirmed. What a feeling after such a disastrous start to the campaign where it looked inevitable that we’d be playing our football in League One next year, but then along came Jose Gomes!

I don’t think words can describe how grateful the Reading fanbase are for Jose, the man’s been a revolution and completely given us our club back which is the best feeling in the world.

In hindsight, the result at Boro is now a bit irrelevant, even though I’m sure the players and the manager were all eager to secure safety themselves and get a result against the play off chasers. All focus can now be directed at Blues next weekend, where a party atmosphere will surely be on it’s way to the Mad Stad.

As ever, some key talking points did arise from the game on Saturday and the fans were quick to head to Twitter after the game to discuss them...

Loader’s goal

What a moment for the youngster. He’s taken his time to find his feet at first-team level, but this goal showed the obvious abundance of quality this kid has got. He could be a real big player for us in the coming years if he keeps providing moments of quality like that.

Loader has had his fair share of critics since breaking into the first team, but that goal might just be the catalyst for him to gain some confidence and start improving his overall performances - I certainly hope that’s the case.

It was a lovely turn to roll Obi Mikel, and then the finish was top drawer stuff giving Darren Randolph (the goalkeeper of the Year!) no chance at all in the Boro goal. The fans certainly loved the goal and, like me, are hoping that it’s just a taster of what Loader has got to offer...

Academy products

Gomes has done many wonderful things so far as Reading boss, no less so than his willingness to integrate more and more academy products into the first team. This was the case again as Rinomhota, Loader, Olise and Josh Barrett all played parts in the defeat on Saturday - and all impressed during their time on the pitch.

Barrett in particular impressed me - it’s really now or never for his Reading career to take off, and hopefully he can continue to push on. He showed a lot of intent and creativity during his 20-minute cameo.

Due to the need to abide by FFP rules this summer which will surely open the door for the academy graduates to really stamp their place down in the first team. We are producing some real talents, and the fans are recognising that...

WE ARE STAYING UP!

What a feeling and what a monumental effort from the players and manager ever since Gomes came into the club. After looking down and out under Clement, we have officially secured another season in the Championship.

Now focus can start to switch to next season, and we can begin to be positive and optimistic about the direction our club is going in. Of course, there is a huge amount of deadwood that needs to be shipped out, but if Gomes can bring in some players that fit his style - like the current loanees - then it could be an exciting season.

Here is the best of the utter delight, relief and pure joy that the fans displayed on Twitter after the game on Saturday afternoon...

Conclusion

A day where our own result became pretty irrelevant. A day to celebrate and to enjoy the last few months this team has given us.

I cannot wait for next season, but first we’ve got a party to attend next Sunday lunchtime at the Madejski... and 20,000 Reading fans have all been invited!

URZZZZ