If you’d come up to me after the final whistle at Luton Town on the final day of last season and told me that after six games of 2022/23 we’d be sitting at the top of the league, I’d have laughed in your face. But here we are.
I’m starting to fall in love with this team very, very quickly. They are leaving everything out on the pitch every time they go out there, fighting for each other every single minute of every single game.
For too long we’ve had a soft centre. We’ve been a team who crumble far, far too easily. But these lads seem to be made of tougher stuff, and huge credit has to go to Paul Ince for instilling that mentality.
And we’re reaping the rewards from it. Top of the league, who’d have thought it? Here’s how the fans reacted to another big win...
We had to wait a tortuously long time to see him in a Reading shirt, but I think we can say it was worth the wait, wasn’t it?
Obviously he ended up being the match-winner with his goal, but his overall performance was really impressive. He looked comfortable on the ball, monstrous in the air and a real presence at the back. As far as debuts go, it really wasn’t a bad one.
The fans have already fallen in love with him...
didn’t see Naby Sarr lose one ball in the air unbelievable performance #readingfc @nabysarr— Jayden Biggs (@Jayden_biggs123) August 27, 2022
Got a lot of time for Naby Sarr putting the clean sheet ahead of the goal here. Proper defender! #ReadingFC pic.twitter.com/WEQzhaBT5A— Erik O (@Orrgarde) August 28, 2022
Naby sarr is magic #readingfc— Will Butler (@willjmb19) August 27, 2022
YOU ABSOLUTE BEAUTYYYY NABY SARR!!!!!!!! Debut goal! That is what dreams are made off. Definitely worth the wait ⚪️ #readingfc— Luke (@Luke1871_) August 27, 2022
NABY SARR DO DO DO DO DO #readingfc— Aidan (@dingaidan_) August 27, 2022
Monstrously good debut from Naby Sarr #readingfc— Marcus Pike (@MarcusKPike) August 27, 2022
WOULD YOU BELIEVE IT! NABY SARR!!#ReadingFC— Tatum (@TatumRFC) August 27, 2022
Naby Sarr the new Sonko.#readingfc— Mick Day (@MickDay99) August 27, 2022
Top of the league
How mental is that? We’re top of the league. Yes we’re only six games in and, let’s be honest, it’s unlikely that we’ll stay at the top of the league until May, but we haven’t had the chance to celebrate much in recent years, so we deserve to enjoy this while it lasts.
Like I said earlier, this team is playing for each other and showing the kind of fight we’ve been craving for so, so long. That fight has now got them to top of the league and the fans are absolutely loving it...
TOP OF THE LEAGUE #readingfc— Tom (@TomMoore0506) August 27, 2022
Let’s enjoy our moment in the sun.— Gary Fleming (@garyfleming14) August 27, 2022
WE’RE READING FC, WE’RE TOP OF THE LEAGUE #readingfc pic.twitter.com/Wx2YWGP7Ra
Don’t get over excited that we’re top of the league. #readingfc pic.twitter.com/KCxSs1XKNP— Simon Latson (@SimonLatson) August 27, 2022
Cheers to every other fanbase that doubted us. Little old Reading under Paul Ince are top of the league. Must hurt #readingfc— Harry Sands (@SarryHands) August 27, 2022
Top of the league in the @SkyBetChamp tonight, thank you @ReadingFC and enjoy it tonight everyone as we need happiness.#ReadingFC pic.twitter.com/llT8T4TRuu— Dominic Gardner (@DG95Official) August 27, 2022
UTFD! #Readingfc we are top of the league! pic.twitter.com/oTmgcV1gq1— JNGLJOEL (@joel_shelton) August 27, 2022
Top of the league! Up the Ding! #readingfc— Will Pitt (@WillPittRFC) August 27, 2022
Shut up we’re top #readingfc pic.twitter.com/99y5JIv7Og— Ben Thomas (@mrblthomas) August 27, 2022
Yes the players have been fantastic and deserve all the plaudits they’re getting at the moment. But the man who deserves the most credit for changing the mentality of this team, in my opinion, is the gaffer.
He was probably every single pundits’ favourite to be the first manager to get sacked and we were written off as relegated before a ball was even kicked. But one game at a time he’s showing those pundits, and most Reading fans, that he’s still got a point to prove. And I’m so here for it.
With results going the way they are, I think it’s fair to say the fans are starting to rather like Ince Sr...
Credit to Paul Ince. When he came in and took over at #ReadingFC he made it clear we had to tighten up at the back and stop shipping in goals. He’s done exactly that by signing physical players in midfield and defence. Something we’ve certainly lacked in recent years— Sam Spencer-Ades (@SamSpencer001) August 27, 2022
I can’t wait for Paul Ince’s interview, I can hear it now “Listen, I love a one nil result”. Inject it into my veins. #readingfc— Tom Byrd (@tommytippy) August 27, 2022
PAUL INCE IS TAKING US TO THE PREM ⚪️ #readingfc— Amilie Poole (@amilie_poole) August 27, 2022
Give Paul ince the keys to the city #readingfc— Ryan (@Ryan_RFC_) August 27, 2022
Every Reading FC fan tonight about Paul Ince #urzz #readingfc pic.twitter.com/b3UXJ2it8c— Malta Royals Trust (@MaltaRoyalsTrus) August 27, 2022
We've got Paul Ince, the guv'nor! #readingfc— Anthony Kendrick (@AJKendrick) August 27, 2022
A 1-0 win away from home, a debut goal for Naby Sarr, a clean sheet, a beautiful day in London and a trip to the top of the league. C’est magnifique.
Paul Ince’s tricky Royals may surprise a few this season if we continue on this path. A team and a club that look like they’re pulling in the same direction, both on the pitch and now off it, too. Long may it continue.