As late Christmas presents go, Tuesday night’s win over Swansea City was a pretty good one. The Royals yet again had to show heart and spirit to dig in and gain three very valuable points.
Andy Carroll’s opener got the ball rolling before player of the season in waiting Tom Ince bagged his 100th career goal to double the lead. A late consolation from Swansea threatened a comeback, but the Royals held on.
There were a few talking points to come from the game, and here’s how the fans reacted to them...
Let’s be honest, you may as well award Tom Ince as our player of the season now. Once again on Tuesday he was superb: full of energy, passion and fight. He leads the way for this team.
Not only that, he bagged himself a goal too - which ended up being the difference between one point and all three.
I just absolutely love him. And it seems the rest of you lot do too...
Great three points that. Ince putting on an absolute clinic once again. Works so hard #readingfc— Harry Sands (@SarryHands) December 27, 2022
96+ and Ince just cleared the pitch, his commitment and work rate is excellent— Olly_URZ (@OllyURZ) December 27, 2022
A team of tom ince's and we would piss the league
Great win, now we have to build on this #readingfc
I honestly don’t think I’ve seen someone work as hard as tom ince on a football pitch #readingfc— Patrick Golden (@pattyiagolden) December 27, 2022
I think it’s fair to say that when Lumley signed, we weren’t expecting much. But, barring Rotherham United away, he’s been assured and looked a really clever signing. And best of all? He absolutely loves ruffling feathers.
Not only did he produce a couple of really important saves against Swansea, he also managed to somehow rile up Russell Martin who, and I quote, said he wanted to ‘fight’ Lumley after the game. Odd.
Here’s what the fans had to say about another fans favourite, Mr Lumley...
I've not always been Lumley's biggest fan, but last night he had a good night and he's just a complete wind up merchant. There's nothing better than seeing him give it to their fans, players and staff in a win. More of last night going forwards please Mr Lumley! #readingfc https://t.co/Gp0RWuqm4H— Matt Lansley (@mattlansley97) December 28, 2022
Joe Lumley celebrating in front of the Swansea fans at FT is exactly what we want to see. The king of ruffling feathers and I’m all for it. Good win that. #ReadingFC— Matt Smith (@RustyRoyal) December 27, 2022
Worth noting that both goals came moments after brilliant keeping from Joe Lumley.— Greg Double (@Dubstep1988) December 27, 2022
Has a monthly clanger in him, but overall he’s done a brilliant job this season.#readingfc
Lumley man of the match for me, brilliant goalkeeping from him #readingfc— Royals Stu (@RoyalStu1871) December 27, 2022
Amazing how much of a fans favourite and all round top player Joe Lumley has become for us. Go back to Rotherham away, he was an absolute laughing stock amongst all fans. What a guy man #readingfc— Rob Nutley (@Rnutley) December 27, 2022
A big win
Yes we rode our luck at times and yes there is a lot that we can improve on and still makes me a little nervous. But honestly, as long as we keep picking up wins I don't care that much - this was an absolutely massive win.
It is ridiculously tight in the league at the moment, even by the Championship’s standards, so all we need to do is keep focusing on ourselves and churning out results.
The fans acknowledged that we may have got a little bit lucky, but also recognised what win it was...
Yesterdays win was massive imo, we need five wins now for the magic 50 and I don’t think that’ll be a problem. #readingfc— Nick Houlton (@Houlton11) December 28, 2022
Another win closer to avoiding relegation. That’s all that matters this year #readingfc— Rob Nutley (@Rnutley) December 27, 2022
Every win is huge in this league but that feels even bigger given the festive run & how we’ve previously capitulated against Swansea. Shows character. Ince’s energy so important. Loum great & awful in equal measure. Silly how much more vulnerable we were with Rahman on #readingfc— Matt Williams (@mattwilliams100) December 27, 2022
Some may say we got away with it, some may say Ince’s substitutions were a bit iffy - I say it’s a great win and three more points towards our number one goal this season: staying up.
To be where we are at this stage of the season is beyond any of our wildest imaginations at the start of our season, and is a credit to everyone involved at the club. There’s still a long way to go, but wins like this will do us no harm at all.