Stoke assistant manager Dave Kemp praised stand-in goalkeeper Steve Simonsen after he made a vital contribution to Tuesday night's Carling Cup third-round penalty shoot-out victory against Reading.

The Potters won 4-3 on spot-kicks after Simonsen saved from Reading's two-goal teenager James Henry and Leroy Lita fired their fifth and final effort effort over the crossbar.

"Simmo has come in and has had a really good game," said Kemp. "He's obviously been out of the team for a while, apart from the Cheltenham game in the previous round of the competition, but he's come back in and done well in front of our own fans."

He added: "He made a great save for the penalty and was a chance for a few of the lads to make an impression. They will be pleased with themselves."

Henry went from hero to villain for Reading by scoring twice and then missing from the spot in the shoot-out.

The Reading-born midfielder, 19, twice equalised for his home-town club in normal time after finding the net in the previous two rounds against Dagenham and Luton.

His penalty on the stroke of half-time cancelled out Vincent Pericard's ninth-minute opener and he then produced a sublime low shot to restore parity in the 75th minute after Mamady Sidibe headed Stoke into a 50th-minute lead.

That took the tie into extra time and, after neither side could fashion a winning goal, the contest was settled on spot-kicks and it was the Potters who emerged victorious.

Ricardo Fuller, Liam Lawrence, Glenn Whelan and Pericard all found the net for Stoke, whose only miss came from Lewis Buxton.

And although Andre Bikey, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Shane Long netted for the Royals, misses from Henry and Lita ensured Reading returned empty-handed.

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