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Bowen Refuses To Let Defeat Break Team Spirit

The Royals boss gave his view on the narrow loss to West Brom and the offside call that denied his side an equaliser.

Reading v West Bromwich Albion - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Adam Fradgley - AMA/WBA FC via Getty Images

Mark Bowen felt his side were unlucky not to pick up points against top of the table West Brom at the Madejski Stadium last night.

The Royals went ahead early on through a George Puscas penalty but West Brom ended up extending their lead at the top with goals through Matheus Pereira and Kyle Bartley.

This leaves the Royals 16th, nine places above the relegation zone and 14 points behind Preston in sixth. Here is what Bowen had to say after the game.

Bowen on the defeat

“I thought the team gave me everything they could give. I’ve got no complaints with the effort they put in and the performance.

“The two goals we conceded though were possibly avoidable, especially the second one as it went through two or three phases before it ended up in the back of our net.

“When the second went in we took the game to them and it changes - I made positive changes to try and affect the game going forward and Slaven was saying to me they were crying out for the final whistle.

“I thought we deserved something out of the game but sometimes you don’t get everything you deserve.”

Bowen on Meite’s offside goal

“It was offside, no doubt. It wouldn’t have surprised me if the referee got it right or wrong. That’s all I’ll say on that matter.”

Bowen on coming back into the game

“We were creating chances and taking the game to them. They are a very good side, they attack from the wings, move the ball quickly and have players who can cause you problems.”

Bowen on the mood post-match

“The mood is fine - we’re disappointed when we lose but I said to the guys, if we put in a performance like that at Sheffield Wednesday we’ll come away with points, no doubt.

“It’s trying to get that consistency in there. We started with a goal and generally a lot better than the past two or three games.

“You’ll have dips in games but we’ll be competitive if we can in every game we play. Our motivation is to win as many games as we can but it’s time now and I said to the guys - we’ve got to win a game.

“It’s been too long since we’ve won a game so the focus is to get three points on Saturday.”

Bowen on if he is worried about the relegation threat

“Not in the slightest. I know the players I’ve got here - not in the slightest.

“This game was tough tonight and we can compete with anybody - I know that.

“We won’t take our eye off the ball and we have to make sure we’re focused in every game we play.

“I wouldn’t allow the players to do that any way.”

Bowen on Andy Yiadom’s return

“I’m delighted for him - he’s been six or seven weeks out injured. I spoke to him and we thought about giving him 60 or 70 minutes but he played 94 minutes and looked as if he had never been away.

“Him back will strengthen the situation. Araruna came in but he’ll be better for it because of the intensity and the physicality of the game.

“We’re going into the back third of the season and there is still a lot to play for, no doubt.”