Royals boss reacts to an away display that impressed all at the iProHaving watched Reading outperform second-placed Derby County on their own turf, the press were expecting a beaming Brian McDermott to be openly thrilled by an away display some bosses would sing and dance about. But while delighted with his players' display and the effort put in by every man out on the iPro pitch this evening, the Royals boss continued to take a measured approach to his post-match analysis.
"I know I don't look pleased, I apologise for my face. I can't alter my face, it's the only one I've got," he quipped with the chuckling press towards the end of a press conference held after the 1-1 draw. "So I do apologise that I don't look really, really happy," he wryly smiled. "But I am happy with everything that's gone on tonight. I'm proud of the players and I will try to liven my face up!"
"We had good pace and passed it really well in the final third - everyone in the dressing room contributed to tonight, but unfortunately we just couldn't kick on and win the game.
"They are really trying to have a go at getting into the Premier League here and Paul Clement is a top manager - they've got good staff here, good players, so I'm sure they're going to be close come the end of the season.
"And it's never easy when you concede a goal in front of 28,000 people. It naturally gives them a lift...but it gave us a lift too. I thought our goal was fabulous, a great passing move.
"I've seen a lot of teams at Reading over the years and this team can really play, they can pass it, they move the ball. And I didn't make any changes tonight because I felt all the time that we were going to go on to win the game.
"We played very well tonight. We've done our jobs tonight which is important. We showed good quality and good spirit. The players have tried everything to win the game, so I can't be disappointed by just a point, I can never be disappointed when I see the players giving us everything.
"We haven't come here for a draw, we've come here to win this game - and we'll try to win every game we're involved in. We've got to be proud of what we've done tonight.
"We're trying to build something, we're trying to build a good side going forward. We've got good players in our dressing room, a good spirit and they can play. We've shown that over the last three games or so; we've won one and drawn two and we probably should have won them all. We're just trying to improve, day in, day out.
"The camaraderie in that dressing room, going over to the fans at the end of the game as one, it showed everyone is going in the same direction - and that is really important. That's the identity I'm talking about."