11:30 16th April 2013
Gaffer on key tweaks
Following the Royals' clean sheet against Liverpool, which earned Nigel Adkins' his first point as Reading manager, the gaffer spoke of the little changes that the side have made to help improve game on game.
It's fair to say that Adkins has seen an improvement in each of his three games as manager, and when asked about his implementation, Nigel explained the importance of achieving what he calls 'process goals' on the pitch.
"There are a lot of process goals that we work through," the boss revealed "A lot of the process goals that we talk about through the course of the week were carried out very well by the players. If we get all of those right, then we give ourselves an opportunity to win the game.
"For example, a throw-in in a certain area of the pitch. If we get our restart position right then we have an opportunity to put the ball where we want to put it and control the game. A goal kick, a throw-in, a free kick – a ball goes in a certain position in the field of play we have to think about set up from that. It’s just those little things."
The Royals were indebted to Alex McCarthy's outstanding performance as they registered their first league clean sheet of the calendar year - but Nigel felt that one or two tweaks in defence combated Liverpool in attack.
"One situation would be the movement of the back four to push up quickly. When the ball goes back, we step forward," he added.
"From a defensive point of view we had to put certain barriers in place to try and nullify the opportunity for Liverpool to score. Some of the things we did well. For example, Pepe Reina was looking for a pass and to kick it – they weren’t able to play from the back because we locked the positions.
"We talk about confidence in any walk of life. The run of results have been going against us of late but we’ve stopped that trend. All being well, there’s a positivity moving forward where we can start looking to get three points. My ambition is to win every game of football and it’s very important that we have a calm manner and work hard on the training ground."