Well, that was quite a response, wasn't it?
The game against Brentford was a absolutely awful from all involved, and the fans needed and deserved a reaction against Luton, and boy did they get one. To the same extent Brentford are a very good team, Luton very much aren’t. But don’t let that take anything away from the result and the performance.
Winning 5-0 away from home anywhere in the Championship is not an easy thing to do, but the Royals made it look as easy as possible on Saturday afternoon. From the get go, every player in blue and white hoops looked hungry to put things right after last Tuesday’s horror show.
Bowen brought in the cavalry with McIntryre, Osho, Pele, Puscas and Blackett coming into the starting eleven - all of which more than repaid the gaffer’s faith, particularly the academy duo Tom McIntyre and Gabriel Osho.
Here’s how the fans reacted to some of the key talking points to come from the perfect performance against basement club Luton Town...
It would be rude to start anywhere else, wouldn't it?
The Ivorian International channeled his inner Thierry Henry against Luton to bag four of Reading’s five goals. All of which showed the composure and calmness infront of goal we’ve been dying to see from Meite for a while now.
For all the effort and dirty work that Yakou shows, I think it’s fair to say that when placed infront of goal with the ball at his feet, we never really feel comfortable that he’s going to score, but hopefully Saturday afternoon was a turning point for him.
The fans were more than pleased for him, and understandably so, as he became the first Reading player to score four goals in a game in 38 years...
Mighty Meite #readingfc— N_Whittingham (@N_Whittingham) July 4, 2020
Meite is best player in the championship #readingfc— Billy (@RFCbilly_) July 4, 2020
0-5 win, Meite hatrick. Get in #ReadingFC #Royals pic.twitter.com/VR4EqU3smA— Joanne McMahon (@Joday32) July 4, 2020
Not sure I've seen a player be so clinical in one game before. Special shout out to Meite who has probably put in the best performance of his career #readingfc— Jack (@thesimpsonRFC) July 4, 2020
Meite proving just how important he is. Not only today, but over the past couple seasons his goals have kept us in the league #readingfc— Farrel Windle (@FazzleBazzle) July 4, 2020
Not sure what's more dangerous COVID-19 or MEITE-19#ReadingFC @Yaks75— ✌️ (@GarethRG12) July 4, 2020
Sat here Singing we’ve got meite and @rachjw88 just walked out the room telling me to shut up! #readingfc— Dan Smith (@dcsmith87) July 4, 2020
Yakou méïté scorer FOUR yes FOUR goals against luton today! What a talent! ⚪️⚽️⚽️⚽️⚽️ #readingfc #royals— * (@Madstad1871) July 4, 2020
The Romanian has come in for more than his fair share of criticism this season, but I think Saturday afternoon was another example of how if Reading play to his strengths, and we allow him time and give him patience, he will be one hell of a player for us.
George bagged himself not only a goal, but two assists two, arguably putting in his most complete performance in a Reading shirt.
This is just pure personal opinion, but please lets give this guy the time he deserves because he will turn out to be some player for us. We should be doing everything were can to keep him this summer.
Here’s how the fans reacted to his performance...
Yak 4 goals— Thomas (@ThomasRfc_) July 4, 2020
Puscas 1 goal 2 assists
#readingfc Two strikers works
This game shows how well puscas can link up when there isn't a gap the length of the M4 between him and the midfield, fully deserved goal #readingfc— hugh rfc vandel'isle (@HughIsle) July 4, 2020
Superb Puscas!— Paul Styles (@TQ_Royal) July 4, 2020
YESSS PUSCAS FINALLY GETS A GOAL!!!! GET IN THERE 4-0!! ⚪️ #readingfc— Luke (@Luke1871_) July 4, 2020
George Puscas. He lives for score. #readingfc #LUTvREA— Tim Patten (@TimRobinPatten) July 4, 2020
That’s three assists and a goal for Puscas today, credit where credit is due #readingfc— Ewan Sparrow (@ewan_sparrow) July 4, 2020
Just goes to show playing two upfront works and helps Puscas instead of him being on his own, glad to see the lad score again and yaks on fire great weekend up the ding we go again Tuesday #readingfc— Miles (@Milesyyy12) July 4, 2020
Must say I’m delighted for Puscas today . Worked hard, couple of lovely assists for Meite and deservedly managed to get himself on the scoresheet with a cutioned back post header. Much needed for the team and the Romanian #readingfc— Dean Bennett (@DeanBennett1993) July 4, 2020
McIntyre and Osho
The defence have been shocking for the last three games, so it’s no surprise that Bowen decade to bring in three new faces to the back four - all of which more than repaid Bowens faith in them. However, it was the two academy products Gabriel Osho and Tom McIntyre that really stood out in the Reading defence.
Osho is out of contract this summer and the fans and the gaffer will be keen to tie him down to a new deal after he put in an extremely mature performance, slotting in at right back - which let’s note isn't his preferred position.
As for Tom McIntyre, honestly this lad has all the foundations in place to become a Reading legend if he wants too. He’s one of us, a fan, and also not a bad centre back too.
He was brilliant on Saturday afternoon and will surely be a mainstay in Reading’s back four next season - the fans certainly want him to be, judging by their reaction on Twitter after the game...
Every Reading fan when they see Tom McIntyre put in #loveit #readingfc pic.twitter.com/cXCEwzotiZ— Purts (@CheckmateBA) July 4, 2020
Osho and Tmac to stay in the team pls @bowen #readingfc— Stanley (@GS_1871) July 4, 2020
Pleased to see osho play and great to see the fans see him.— Reading FC Blue And White Wall (@bluewhitewall) July 4, 2020
Keep it up Osho, I hope you play and get more minutes for us.#ReadingFC
Oh my Christ Tom McIntyre is a good defender. #readingfc #LUTvREA— Tim Patten (@TimRobinPatten) July 4, 2020
Just going to say this:— マーク・ロブソン ✌️ (@MarkRobson15) July 4, 2020
Isn’t it weird that we can actually defend without our captain. Or does that say Moore about him.
McIntyre and Osho looking good. #readingfc
After seeing Osho today I feel happy letting Gunter go and having Yiadom as 1st choice. Would also rather see McIntyre given more games too and make Moore earn his place. Morrison out best CB for me this season #readingfc— Tom Maynard (@ttmaynard) July 4, 2020
Thought McIntyre was incredible today btw #readingfc— JDM (@RFC_Smurf93) July 4, 2020
McIntyre made a difference today. A proper CD display. Great to have someone to root for in a pretty apathetic team. #readingfc— Will Trow (@noseypeg) July 4, 2020
The perfect response, and one that probably puts to bed the slim fear of relegation just as much as the Brentford game put to bed the play off aspirations.
The most pleasing thing on Saturday though, was the fact that the eleven players on the pitch looked like they wanted to be there, and wanted to be representing our club.
Four players have stolen the headline with the key talking points, but more than honourable shout-outs must go to Blackett, Pele, and stand-in skipper Swift who were all very, very good.
Hopefully we can continue this vein of form on Tuesday night against Huddersfield.