Hunty inspired by performance
With victory snatched from the Royals so cruelly – it’s perhaps forgiveable to overlook the abundance of positive factors from Saturday’s game.
But Noel Hunt, who score his first ever Premier League goal, was proud of Reading’s fearless display against Newcastle United and believes the side are now playing the way they know best.
“It shows what a week can do,” Hunt said. “It’s obvious that there’s been a change in our performances. We needed to concentrate on playing our own game and not to be embarrassed by it - Newcastle have a similar direct style of play and they managed to get into Europe last season.
“At the start of the season we didn’t get things quite right but in the last two games it’s been working much better.
“We needed to get after them, challenge for everything and not give them a minute on the ball. We just had to be honest and give it everything we can. We had terrific players who could come off the bench and give the team fresh legs – we’ve got a great squad.
“It was nice to score. I was delighted with the goal and I thought we had done enough to go on to win the game. We were in full control, looked really good and dominated the game. Newcastle are a great side and I think they were relieved to come out of the game with a point.
“It was a clear handball – you could see he converted the ball with his hand. But what can you say? The referee hasn’t seen it. It’s bad luck for us and it’s taken away three deserved points – but we can’t do anything about it.”
‘Hunty’ also emphasised the importance of the Royals’ faithful in making the Madejski a fortress – but is also confident of getting a result on the road at Swansea on Saturday.
He added, “The Madejski is our home, our palace. We’ve got to make it a fortress and against Newcastle we did that.
“I’ve been here five years now and I’ve learned that if you give everything, then so will the fans. They were magnificent on Saturday and when I scored it was ecstasy.
“The manager’s stressed the importance of our own identity – how we stamp our own label on the field. We respect for our opposition but when we go out there we impose our game. I think we did that and hopefully we can get three points against Swansea.”