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Watford Fans Verdict: Another Dent To Top-Six Dreams

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Harry rounds up the reaction after the Royals suffered another blow to their play-off hopes - and it’s the biggest yet.

PA Images via Getty Images

I want to start this edition of Fans’ Verdict addressing the biggest issue that came from Friday night - an event that took place away from the football pitch.

Liam Moore is the epitome of a club captain. This club has seen some very dark days over the last few years which caused a huge disconnect between us, the fans, and the players. Liam Moore has, in my opinion, been the biggest bridge-builder to try and get that connection back.

Countless times he's replied to my alcohol-fueled messages of admiration on Instagram, even going out of his way to send me a pair of signed boots, too. Things that probably don’t mean a huge amount to him - but make fans feel valued and part of their club.

It goes without saying, but the racist abuse he suffered after the game on Friday night is abhorrent, appalling and made me feel sick to my stomach. He doesn’t deserve that, nobody does. Everyone at TTE stands behind our skipper, as does the rest of the Reading fanbase - because if you don’t, you are not welcome as a fan.

Before that abuse came to light though, there was 90 minutes of football played. 90 minutes that is pretty insignificant in the grand scheme of things, but 90 minutes that left our play-off hopes as slim as they have been all season.

Here's how the fans reacted to the key talking points...

Michael Olise

Just too good for us. Simple as that. With our promotion hopes now very, very slim, it looks more likely than ever that this season will be his last in the blue and white hoops, which is a shame, but inevitable and we can have no complaints.

He was in imperious form on Friday evening. Gliding, dancing, shimmying his way best Watford players as if they weren't there, and also doing more than his fair share defensively - which is something I am always extremely impressed with. He puts in a shift every single game, and when you combine that with his obvious abundance of natural talent, you’ve got the ingredients for a top, top player.

His performance left the fans in awe on Twitter after the game...

Missed chances

It’s going to be horribly ironically if missing sitters means we miss out on the play-offs, considering how we built our early-season success on being ruthlessly clinical in front of goal.

Yakou Meite and George Puscas were the big culprits on Friday, missing some huge chances to get us back into the game when we were playing well. If one of those goes in, we’re right back in the game and considering how the game was flowing, I would’ve backed us to go and get something from it.

However, that’s the difference between a team going up vs a team trying to go up: when it really matters Watford turned up, and we didn't. The fans were left frustrated yet again with some big missed chances...

Play-off hopes

It’s gutting that we’re in the position we’re in with five games to go. Really, really gutting. With a tough run in, the toughest of all the play-off chasing teams, the odds are increasingly stacking against us.

We still need to have hope though. We probably need three or four wins from our last five, and for results to go our way in other games too - which, yes, is unlikely, but by no means impossible, particularly in this league.

I don’t think we can afford to lose another game, and we have to win against Cardiff next Friday in my opinion. That’s pressure, but pressure makes diamonds. The fans were left in a deflated mood after the 2-0 defeat to The Hornets...

Conclusion

A bitter blow to our play-off hopes, but a pretty insignificant 90 minutes of football considering the aftermath and the abuse aimed at our captain.

That wasn't a fan of Reading Football Club that tweeted that - no fan aims racial abuse at one of their own players. Liam Moore is one of us, he’s a Royal, and he’s our captain - we wouldn't be where we are without him.

In football terms, play-offs is looking unlikely, but nowhere near out of the question. We have to keep moving forward.

URZ.