But I’m of the opinion that now is not the time for overreaction, and instead focussing attention on what really matters; getting the Royals league campaign up and running.
Adam Federici didn’t have the best of days against Forest, but I’m confident he has the mentality to bounce back from the disappointment and play his part in getting our first league win of the season at Leicester on Saturday evening.
Attention then shifted to the Carling Cup with the Royals welcoming Northampton Town to the Madejski Stadium on Tuesday evening.
Changes were rung all over the team, including that of Ben Hamer coming in for Federici between the posts, while Noel Hunt made his long awaited first team start after nearly ten months out injured.
Things were going well when a Matt Mills back heel gave Reading the lead early in the first half, but the Cobblers were soon back in the match when Andy Holt stabbed home.
After the equaliser, it was a really poor display from Brian McDermott’s team who were made to look second best from a side two leagues below them.
Despite having led three times, the Royals were unable to retain that lead resulting in a penalty shoot out loss. A really disappointing match with plenty of questions raised about whether the strength in depth is quite at the level we think it is.
The number of goalkeepers fighting for the position in the side probably epitomises the unbalance within the squad. Manager Brian McDermott is having to make do with only two fit centre halves in Alex Pearce and Matt Mills while club captain Ivar Ingimarsson’s long awaited comeback has been put on hold.
It’s a similar story up front with Grzegorz Rasiak now departing for pastures new in Cyprus, leaving just three recognised strikers with regular first team experience in Noel Hunt, Shane Long and Simon Church.
*Disclaimer: The views in this article are that of the writer and may not replicate those of the Professional Footballers' Association.
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