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Club News

Stats: The first four

23 April 2013

Improvements in each match

Of course, it's points that matter the most when assessing performances.

Though last Saturday's trip to Norwich yielded no return in terms of points for Reading, it underlined a game-by-game improvement for the Royals in their play.

- The percentage of possession has improved in each game; the Royals had just 29.9% of the ball against Arsenal in Adkins' first game, had increased amounts against Southampton and Liverpool, before boasting the lion's share against Norwich at Carrow Road (59.4% in the first half, 54.5% overall).

- Adkins' men have also made a steady increase in the total number of passes made in a game, and the number of passes completed. The Royals attempted just 276 passes at the Emirates, before going in pursuit of 307 and 312 against Liverpool and Southampton, and then striving a total of 422 against Norwich - with an impressive 74% pass completion rate.

- Jem Karacan was the standout performer on the pitch for either side with the ball on Saturday - he made 53 successful passes out of 59. He linked up well with a number of players, particularly Stephen Kelly - the two combining 14 times, all passes successful.

The manager is under no illusions that what happens in the final third is the most important thing, but is buoyed by the Royals adaptation to his style of play and believes we will improve.

"If you give the opposition the ball, then the law of averages says you're not going to win many games of football. It's about getting the ball and working quickly through the field of play in a controlled manner to give yourself opportunities to go and score.

"If you'd watched us in the first game at Arsenal and compared it to our performance here, there are obviously things we are implementing. And the players' attitude has been first class. We've got to take those positives forward, looking to improve on everything we do.

"Ultimately, though, it's about what you do in both penalty areas. We'll look at the footage and I think we'll see several good opportunities that we had to score. We create some good chances, but we need to look at the decision-making process of the players who had the chances to go and execute them. But the more times we do it, the better we'll get at it."

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