U21s fight back to earn a draw at the HawthornsWest Brom 3 (Nabi 2, Sawyers 61, Roofe 67)
Reading 3 (Samuel 35 & 81, Losasso 79)
Two stunning goals in quick succession completed a terrific comeback from Reading’s U21s to earn a point at West Brom.
Dominic Samuel slotted home before half time to cancel out the Baggies’ second minute opener, but the young Royals were chasing a 3-1 lead mid-way through the second half.
But Charlie Losasso smashed home an excellent free kick in off the post to claw Reading back in it – before Samuel fired in from long range just two minutes later to accomplish the comeback at the Hawthorns.
Chris Cummins’ young guns were looking to push on from their 3-0 win over Norwich last Monday at the Madejski Stadium – with Academy midfielder Jack Stacey coming in for Lawson D’Ath, who is out on loan at Cheltenham.
They were up against a strong Baggies side boosted by first team players Billy Jones, Chris Brunt and Jerome Thomas – while experienced goalkeeper Boaz Myhill wore the goalkeeper gloves.
Before Reading had a chance to settle into the game, they fell behind. Baggies forward Adil Nabi seized possession of the ball and blasted his shot into the roof of the net.
It was somewhat harsh on the Royals – a strike with barely a minute gone and one that Jonathon Henly had no chance of saving.
It took a while for the young Royals to get into the game but they managed to improve as the half went on – and equalised ten minutes before the break.
Dominic Samuel, fresh from scoring twice last week against Norwich, got hold of a through ball and tucked away neatly past Boaz Myhill to level.
After surviving a scare or two before the interval, Reading started brightly after the break – but were served another suckerpunch when Baggies striker Romaine Sawyers curled home.
And it got worse five minutes later, when Kemar Roofe finished off a very scrappy bit of play in Reading’s box – tough on the young Royals.
But their heads didn’t drop at all. Samuel earned a free kick deep into the Baggies’ half – and up stepped Losasso to smash home in off the post.
Just two minutes later, the comeback was complete. Samuel raced forward and lashed home from 30 yards out – leaving Myhill with absolutely no chance to complete a fantastic turnaround.
Samuel nearly grabbed his hat-trick and sensational winner, but his header agonisiningly came back off the crossbar.
3-3 was the final score – as it was for the first team. Loads of positives to take for the U21s with West Ham next up the following Monday.
Reading: Henly; Arnold, (Sweeney 80) Macdonald, Keown, Griffin; Tshibola (Ikpeazu 80), Stacey (Webb 57), Gunnarsson, Losasso; Samuel, Taylor.
Subs not used: Lincoln, Shama.
West Brom: Myhill, Jones (O’Sullivan 72), Garmsron, Brunt (Brown 61), Daniels, Gayle, Thomas, Mantom, Sawyers, Nabi, Roofe.
Subs not used: Lewis, Birch, Atkinson.