Orjan Nyland: 6
Not tested much all afternoon after the opener, but came up with an important save late on. Poor distribution though, with various long-range passes going astray.
Andy Yiadom: 6
A pretty middling afternoon for Yiadom. Reading couldn't get him into the game as an attacking threat in the first half, and he wasted his one crossing opportunity before the break. Better in the second half, but still not that heavily involved. He’ll have better games, he’ll have worse ones too.
Michael Morrison: 5
Morro hasn't looked up to the standards he set in his first couple of seasons for a while now, and today he again didn't inspire confidence.
While he was generally on top of things defensively, he looked clunky and unadventurous in possession, too often knocking the ball around the back rather than looking to get it upfield. A long pass over the top to play in Swift in the first half was welcome, but unfortunately not repeated. Also gave the ball away cheaply in his own third at one point in the first half.
Goes home with an assist for setting up Laurent at close range with a simple pass.
Tom Holmes: 6
Looked more assured than his centre-back partner, although he also wasn't that troubled. Did well to tidy up with a couple of interventions after that prior-mentioned case of Morro giving the ball away.
Tom McIntyre: 5
I end up mentioning this pretty much every game I do the ratings, but McIntyre's not a left back. Barnsley had too much joy down his side in the early stages, and there was too much space for them to work in for scoring the early opener.
Got forward OK but didn't have the dynamism or pace to overlap Ejaria and cause damage down that side. Did force a corner though with a nicely hit shot from range, and put in a key block late on.
Josh Laurent: 6
Right place, right time for one of the most important goals of Reading's season. Laurent only had to slot the ball home from close range, but hey, he got the job done.
It masked a quiet afternoon from Laurent, who looked restrained in a deeper role due to Rinomhota's absence. For most of the match he had little impact, and it's telling that Paul Ince said after the game that was going to take Laurent off.
Regardless, at the end of the day, Reading have Laurent to thank for an absolutely vital point.
Danny Drinkwater: 7
My man of the match. Drinkwater put himself about really well in the midfield, adding a lot of the energy that Reading were missing in the absence of Andy Rinomhota. He's generally regarded as a passing midfielder and did indeed show that a few times today, such as with a ping out wide in the build-up to Ince’s first-half chance. But he's got an inner terrier-like quality that's underappreciated and really came out today.
Tom Ince: 6
A bit of a mixed performance to judge really. I’ve always been happy with his work rate and he’s clearly talented, but the end product isn’t quite there. A neat encapsulation of that came in the second half when Ince did so well to dance past a few players into the area, but ultimately couldn’t get a shot off and ended up being booked for diving.
Also should have done better with a first-half chance when he couldn’t get a shot away after Ejaria’s cross. and had a chance blocked late on.
John Swift: 6
Not bad, but also not one of his better performances. He generally wasn’t in the game enough, particularly the first half - like the rest of Reading’s attacking players though really. He did however have one of our better first-half chances when making a run in behind and forcing a save.
More productive in the second half, even when pushed out to the left wing to allow Josh Laurent to move into the 10 role, and almost scored with a curler that was pushed out for a corner.
Ovie Ejaria: 5
The game passed him by, although it didn’t help that he often had to drop deeper to get the ball and couldn’t be brought into the game higher up. Had a few crossing opportunities in the first half that he mostly wasted. It’ll help him when he gets a more attacking left back to work with.
Lucas João: 4
When Joao’s on it he’s unplayable, when he’s off it - like today - he doesn’t get going at all. Joao didn’t really get into the game and was too sloppy in possession when he had the chance to kick off an attack in the final third. He did have a couple of chances in the second half, but neither were that major.
Tom Dele-Bashiru: 5
Replaced Ejaria and I thought he’d come out to the left, but he actually moved into Laurent’s deeper spot, meaning Laurent going to 10 and Swift to the left wing. Didn’t really have enough time on the pitch to get involved, but he was still pretty quiet.
Who was your man of the match against Barnsley? Vote below or through this link.