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Interviews

Ali: “What we've done to reach the play-offs has been amazing”

2 May 2017

Al-Habsi on a win over Wigan and sealing a top six spot..

Reading goalkeeper and Player of the Season Ali Al-Habsi was full of praise for everyone at the club after Saturday’s win over Wigan, as Reading secured a play-off spot with a game to spare.

The stopper was highly complimentary of his teammates as well as the Royals staff, saying the team had done a fantastic job to reach where they had at this stage of the campaign.

“I want to say congratulations to everyone at this football club,” said Al-Habsi. “The players, the staff and the fans, because what we have done to reach the play-offs has been amazing.

“We haven’t played with pressure from the start of the season, because nobody thought that Reading would reach the play-offs. But that has made us more relaxed in the way that we have played because everyone has been talking about other teams and we have just done our job.

“Don’t forget that we work really, really hard every single day and the results have shown, especially at home.”

The Oman international captain says Reading’s home form was a massive factor in sealing a top six place having won 16 of their 23 games at Madejski Stadium this season.

Ali also pointed the manager out as the other main reason behind the team’s success, saying that he has instilled a confidence and belief within the side enabling the team to achieve big results on a consistent basis.

“Yes we’ve lost two games at home,” said Ali. “But when you want to be in the play-offs you need to be good at home and that is what we’ve been doing this season.

“To be third in the table comes through hard work. Everyone has worked together to reach this level. The gaffer has been brilliant this year, and the confidence he has given the players and the confidence in the way he wants us to play has spoken for itself.

“Now we relax for one week and concentrate for the next game,” continued the Reading stopper. “Burton is an important game and we need to finish with as many points as possible and go into the play-offs with that winning mentality. We need the momentum going from now. We need to focus because the play-offs are only two games and then you could be going to Wembley.

“It was a difficult game against Wigan, they needed the points to give themselves a chance, but we scored that goal in the first five minutes and defended well to get the clean sheet. We’ve just got to continue what we’ve been doing all season.”


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