U21s move up to second in league tableMartin Kuhl hailed the mentality of Reading’s U21s after they made it six successive wins with a 3-0 victory over Stoke City at Madejski Stadium to keep their promotion push on track.
Goals from Andrija Novakovich, Sean Long and Shane Griffin earned the Royals a more-than-deserved three points, and a perfect return in their final three league games will see the U21s promoted to Premier League Division One.
“We’re on a bit of a run at the moment,” said Kuhl. “We want to get out of this league and the chance of gaining promotion is in our own hands. We’ve had six wins and have done really well of late.
“We’d spoken about being ruthless, especially in the box. We created some good chances and were a bit sloppy with our finishing, but in the second half we expected Stoke to come at us a bit more.
“The beginning of the first half, we were a bit sloppy and the importance of our mentality was massive. In the second half our mentality was brilliant. Stoke had the occasional counter attack but overall we were very comfortable.”
The U21s are next in action when they take on Aston Villa at Madejski Stadium on Friday, before facing Wolves and West Bromwich Albion in their final two games.
Kuhl said: “Villa are on a good run. It will be a very difficult game for us and the main objective for all of our squad is to be pushing for the first team. If we perform like we are, keep getting results; keep banging on the door then hopefully they may get their opportunities.
“We said before, the lads don’t have to rely on anyone. If we want to get promoted then we’ll do it our own way. If we can win our games, we’ll be promoted and that’s exactly what we want.”
Long’s first-half header and Griffin’s composed finish after the break saw the Royals enter rare territory with both full-backs finding the net in the same game.
“They’ve got nose bleeds, both of them,” joked Kuhl. ”They were both a bit giddy after the game, everyone was very pleased for them and, as a team, we could have scored a couple more goals.”