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Veljko Paunovic Slams Reading’s ‘Unacceptable’ Performance In Luton Defeat

How the manager saw another home defeat for Reading.

Reading v Luton Town - Sky Bet Championship - Select Car Leasing Stadium Photo by Andrew Matthews/PA Images via Getty Images

Another game, another poor performance, another defeat, this time to the hands of Luton Town. The visitors came away with a 2-0 victory at the SCL Stadium. Reading sit in 21st with Peterborough three points behind. Reading haven’t won since our 3-2 victory against Swansea in November, picking up two points since then.

He is what Pauno had to say after the game, he spoke the official club website and Berkshire Live.

Paunovic on the defeat

“Games like this, we have to forget as soon as possible. This wasn’t us. It was unacceptable and a face that we haven’t shown in the past and it has to be eliminated. Eradicate this mentality immediately. The games come and then they are gone… so we don’t have time. We have to show a reaction now. And we have to show much more pride.

“Today was another game where we gave up two poor goals with mistakes that are avoidable. We have to start learning what we are capable of doing. That’s a must. Today we were lacking urgency, we were lacking anger and, in moments when we needed to show character and courage, we didn’t. That has to come immediately. And everyone can control that.

“We know we are much better than this. And we can’t always keep saying the same things – we have to put things into action.

“Without courage, without anger, without urgency, you can’t play football. You can’t be the player you are. You can’t be the team you are if you are missing these important ingredients. And they were absent tonight.

“Feeling sorry for ourselves… I hate that. I’m not going to let anyone spread the negativity or blame. We have to keep ourselves accountable for what we are doing, but there is no time for negativity.

“That is a mentality of poor character. And we can’t have that here. We have to give support to each other. We have to get back on the track together. We have to accept we have a terrible week behind us. But that this is football and the opportunities that are coming need to be approached much better.

“There is an obvious solution for this. We have to recover our pride, we have to recover our composure and we have to start playing as a team.”

Paunovic on whether Moore absence is a distraction

“Moore is injured and recovering from it. I wanted to make a change with the captaincy and I communicated that to him. I think it is carrying a lot of burden [on him] and he needs to focus on his performances. I want to open that space to someone else as I think changes are needed. I’m looking at other departments and places where I can improve.”

Paunovic on if he was surprised by Moore’s reaction

“We can’t put on ourselves more difficulties and distractions because that’s not going to lead anywhere. We must recover and recompose our face again.”

Paunovic on Tom Holmes’ own goal

“Mistakes come - I saw it coming. I wasn’t surprised because when you know your team, you know what’s coming. Everyone tries his best and it’s unfortunate today it was mistakes from different individuals.

“We have to support the guys, acknowledge the mistakes and look to fix them. We don’t have time to be negative. This team, at this point, feels alone and the only ones that can fix things is us.

“The logical thing is to look around us and see who is willing to do the extra mile to fix this, work hard and recompose the team and confidence around the club.”

Paunovic on running out of time

“We need an immediate reaction. We can’t just keep saying next game, it’s this game. We must improve, show a reaction and must win.”