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The Alternative View: Port Vale 1-0 Reading

Dave takes a look at how Reading’s defeat in Stoke on Trent went down among opposition fans and the media.

Port Vale v Accrington Stanley - Sky Bet League One Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images

Welcome back, not only to the first league away game of the season, but also the Alternative View, after a hiatus for a couple of seasons.

Many people, after hearing that Port Vale got thumped by Barnsley, and after the midweek result, would have expected the Royals to be the certain favourites for a win here, but hey that’s football for you.

Our away form has continued into this season and it’s now 14 games without a win on the road. After 25 minutes on Saturday we looked fairly comfortable, but goals change games - as do missed penalties - and our Andy Carroll, who was doing a good impression of Bambi on Ice for most of the game, missed his spot kick. This seemed to instil a bit more get up and go in the hosts.

As always, if you don’t make or take chances you will get punished, and this was no different. The hosts probably in truth deservedly took the lead with some Keystone Cops defending and goalkeeping and that was that.

The home fans didn’t seem too positive going into the game but, by the end of it, were understandably happy with the Valiants’ efforts.

Port Vale views

Now imagine if we put a cross in...

Try being a Royals fan with our defence…

Well it worked...

One game and all that

It was a good following – the only plus from Reading

That’s a fair summary of the game

Were there any home fans?

What is it with the Potteries teams and Tom Jones?

Nothing like being positive

Roar? Whimper more like

Expectation over working hard

League One refs are there for a reason...

Don’t give up the day job

And they get worse


So, given that we are heading towards the basement of the Football League pyramid, news reporting from Saturday was somewhat limited, but this is a highlight of what is out there.

Starting with the local reports and the Reading Chronicle highlight the point that we didn’t muster a shot against a team that conceded seven goals a week previously. In contrast, the Stoke Sentinel seemed to take a more cautious view on the game, focusing heavily on the £50m player in Andy Carroll (hmmm) and how good a job they did on him. They do go on to say that, for all Reading’s domination, we did little with it.

Auntie Beeb has as usual their still monotone report without anything earth-shattering but a few facts.

So, the big difference between League One and the Championship is the reporting you get. Whereas in the Championship we got a write-up and a video, now in League One we just get the video and are lost in the roundup of the rest of the league’s activities.

Anyway, for the masochists, you can find the match highlights – all 1m57s of them – here.


We are three games into the new season so you really cannot make judgements just yet, but there are signs that we could be in for a long season. However, one win could make a difference. What is for certain is that Ruben Selles needs to get a grip and instil some confidence and his game plan on the team.

I have no doubt that, after two league games, the established players are either a) still damaged from last season or b) still can’t be bothered performing. Either way these are not terrible players and for League One should be able to perform. This for me is man-management and getting players to perform is laid at Selles’ door - he needs to get a grip on it.

Onto Tuesday and the whole pre-match discussion will be team selection; Selles could bow to the mob or he could stick. It’ll be interesting to see which way he goes.

Cmon urzzz!