The Royals got back to winning ways with a fantastic 3-2 victory against Swansea City at the Swansea.com Stadium.
Reading went 1-0 down with just three minutes on the clock through Jamie Paterson but Tom Dele-Bashiru scored an equaliser just a minute later. Andy Carroll scored his first goal for the Royals in the 30th minute to take us into half-time leading 2-1. Ryan Manning equalised just after half time through a fantastic goal, but Danny Drinkwater scored the winner just a minute later to give us three important points.
We now sit 21st, four points off the relegation area. Veljko Paunovic was delighted with the victory, describing it as the ‘perfect storm’. He spoke the official club website and Berkshire Live.
Paunovic on the victory
“A superb performance and a superb win. Fantastic cohesion on the field and with the fans that came today… they came in a big number – thank you for that! It is a great moment for us to build momentum on this team performance and to bring the pieces together.
“I’m very happy for Danny and Andy’s goals – their first for the club – and the performance from the team. Most of the players who played today had some knocks or physical issues but they were capable of a putting out a fantastic physical performance.
“I know that this team in recent years has struggled when going behind first. But with all the difficulties we have had, the team are learning to deal with situations. Now we are better at responding to set-backs in games. Today we were capable of not only coming back, but winning the game.
“Swansea are a very good side and capable of fantastic football. They kept the ball away from us, but we had the response to that: good defensive structure, fantastic attitude, and very clinical in execution in the opportunities on the counter-attack.
“Everything that we needed, it happened in the perfect way. It was the perfect storm. It was difficult to play against this team, but everyone put in an excellent performance. It is the right moment for the team to keep rising up.”
Paunovic on coming back from behind
“We gave a statement that we’re never going to give up. We’re all in this together and we’re going to fight. Another positive - this team in the past had difficulty in coming back after conceding first but that has changed this year.
“It just shows the changes we made and the new personnel we brought in is capable of dealing with difficulties. That’s a huge strength for the team. I’m very grateful to the players for their output and performance.”
Paunovic on Drinkwater and Carroll
“They are very important for their presence, composure and qualities. Our players like to be on the ball so we had to adjust and execute a plan B. But with them on the field, that’s not a shock for us.
“We had to close the lines, look to win the ball back and fire up the counter attack. It worked for us and it’s great to see the capability of our players. For the second goal it was an instinctive reaction from Drinkwater when he played the ball in behind for Carroll.”
Paunovic on Carroll’s impact
“We can play the ball long so we have an alternative in our game on top of bringing the ball into the final third. He has a presence in the box and our crosses are more purposeful and dangerous because he is someone who can affect them.”
Paunovic on Carroll’s future with the club
“It was good for both and it was the best we could do in that moment. He understands that although if we could, and there are others in a similar situation, we would commit him for the longer term because we want people to know where they belong so they can build their future. It’s something we have to keep working on and we have to solve that soon.”
Paunovic on building on the win
“There was great cohesion between the players and the fans that were here. We were very thankful to them and for their support which was very important. To build momentum now, we are having players back from injury and for the first time we have a whole team available together.
“It’s an organic situation where we can recover the guys and use the great feeling this win propels towards the future. The statement in this week was very important. I told the players after the points deduction, this week everyone will look at us so we need a result as soon as possible.
“We need to make a statement and we achieved that goal with this game. Now we have to build momentum so we can catch up those above us in the table.”
Paunovic on Moore and Ejaria being absent
“They have soft tissue injuries in the last game but we expect them to be back soon. We will know more in the upcoming week. We’ll stay positive and remain focused and hopefully, we can recover more players this week.”