A year ago this weekend, Hull City were taking on Liverpool at Anfield in the Premier League. And, back in the Championship, the Tigers certainly proved extremely tough nuts to crack at Madejski Stadium this afternoon as the Royals toiled in today's early Autumn encounter.
“We should have done better,” manager Jaap Stam said. “Better in our own decision-making…taking one or two touches on the ball, passing and moving the ball quickly, making runs in behind at the right time, playing the ball at the right time. And that is up to the players on the pitch.
“We needed to do things quicker. We needed to do things better. And we’re working on it. We worked on it in training, but you need to rely on the players to translate it. And they can do it, they’ve shown that on many, many occasions. And they tried to do it as well as they could today. But we all realise we should have done better.”
“We lost that ball in the first half and, from the only chance they had in the first half, they score that goal.
“After that, the opposition drop in deeper and wait for the counter attack. And it becomes important for you to do it right when you do make those decisions in front of the box.
“And yet towards the end of the game, we’re still 1-0 down, we have all the possession and we are getting into situations where you hope you can create something, but it goes on longer and longer without getting that equaliser.
“So you have to be happy when you score towards the end of the game and get a point.”
Jon Dadi Bodvarsson came off the bench to score an 87th minute equaliser and earn the Royals a point late in the day.
“It’s not always easy to create chances and score goals when the opposition is playing like they did. But in the second half the players worked very hard for it.
“I understand everyone wants us to go forward as quickly as possible, but you need to be patient as well. Sometimes you have to think logically about what you need to do.
“If the opposition are playing higher up the pitch, you have more space to run into and that makes it a lot easier to be a threat going forward. But if they’re sitting in front of the box, and as a striker you need to run between 10 players and it’s a lot more difficult.
“As a team, you have to keep creating gaps, openings to get that ball, to play that pass…and you need to put a lot of work in.
“They did that, they kept going and didn’t lose their head, even when the crowd turned against them which is not good to hear at home. The players kept going and it paid off eventually with the equaliser.
“It’s not the result we wanted - we all wanted a win at home. But it’s better to get a draw than lose the game. And we’ll work on it again ahead of two more games this week.”