Manager hoping to string together resultsRoyals boss Steve Clarke wants Saturday’s visit to Bristol City to spell the start of another run of undefeated fixtures, after seeing a seven-game unbeaten string of fixtures came to an end.
After remaining unvanquished since the first game of the season, Reading were finally beaten again by Derby County on Tuesday – the Rams capitalised on a numerical advantage after Reading were reduced to ten men by netting the game’s only goal after the break. But the Royals boss is hopeful that the Ashton Gate will allow the team to pick up from where they had been before.
“We had been on a good run so it was disappointing to break that run,” Clarke said. “But we just get ourselves ready for the next game and we’ll start to build another run – that’s the most important thing.
“The players know that they had a decent performance against a good team. In football, you can lose – it’s how you react to defeats that counts, and we’ll see how the reaction goes against Bristol City on Saturday.”
Orlando Sa will serve the first of his three-game suspension, meaning that a starting berth will open up for someone else in the squad. With Anton Ferdinand hopeful of shaking off the injury which kept him out of Tuesday’s game, Clarke still has a strong squad at his disposal for Saturday.
He continued “Squad fitness is good – more or less all of the regulars and established players are available. We need to check on Anton today to see how his injury is, and we’ll make a decision over the next 48 hours to see whether he’ll be back involved. But everybody else is fit and good to go.
“Orlando’s red card is a three game suspension, so that gives other people a chance to stake a claim in the team. That’s why you have a big squad and competition for places, and I Iook forward to seeing the boys that get a chance to play.”