We kickstarted our look back at the season so far by showing you the best pictures from a perfect September, but now it’s time for October, and we picked up where we left off, having ended September with a battling away win over Cardiff City.
First up for the Royals was a visit from fellow early promotion hopefuls, Watford.
October 3rd: Reading 1-0 Watford
In our final fixture before the season’s first international break, George Pușcaș stepped up to the plate in the absence of Lucas João to steal the limelight and set the Royals on their way to a third clean sheet, and fourth successive victory in as many games.
The Romanian held the ball up well, before turning his man to force the ball into the Hornets’ net.
The final whistle sparked celebrations that demonstrated the undeniable team spirit Pauno and his staff had instilled in the players, as every single member of the squad made their way to be part of the collective huddle.
October 17th: Middlesbrough 0-0 Reading
The Riverside Stadium is a tough place to go at the best of the times, and for the first time the Royals dropped points, as they were made to dig in against a stubborn Neil Warnock side.
Our perfect start to the campaign may have come to an end but we showed a doggedness that is a key to all good sides, as again a defensively solid display ensured another shut out for Rafael and his back four.
It was a fight that ended in a stalemate, as we prepared to embark on a busy schedule, with four games in just 13 days fast approaching.
October 20th: Reading 1-0 Wycombe Wanderers
Our newly promoted visitors may have sat at the foot of the table, but they made Pauno’s men earn their victory at the Madejski Stadium.
It took the Royals just over an hour to break the deadlock and end the Chairboys resistance, and but for yet another piece of individual brilliance from Lucas João, it could have been so different.
The Portuguese striker latched on to a long ball, before producing a confident finish that saw Reading go three points clear at the top of the table.
October 24th: Reading 3-0 Rotherham United
Yakou Méïté was the talk of the town following his performance against the Millers. Not only did he score twice to secure the Royals yet another victory, but the Ivorian produced a stunning piece of athleticism, firing home a bicycle kick worthy of a Puskás award.
Free-scoring João also got in on the act with moments to spare, as Pauno’s men ran out comfortable winners in RG2.
October 27th: Blackburn Rovers 2-4 Reading
A buoyant Méïté was again in inspired form, and this time needed just nine seconds to produce what was one of our fastest ever goals. The rest of the eleven then continued to help pick apart Rovers, who despite scoring twice, allowed Michael Olise, Josh Laurent and João to get themselves on the scoresheet.
In what was a really open affair, we showed just how much our game management has developed, having fallen short in a similarly open game against Blackburn last season, who this time were stunned by a clinical Reading display.
A lengthy trip to Lancashire executed in the best possible fashion, as the Royals opened up a seven-point gap between themselves and second-placed Swansea City.
October 30th: Coventry City 3-2 Reading
The month ended with a stark reminder that not only would things not always go our way, but that anyone can beat anyone.
Second half strikes from João and Pușcaș were too little to prevent the Sky Blues from notching three on an evening to forget for the Royals defence. It was time to knuckle down and move on, cutting our losses from our trip to Birmingham.
The driving rain may have dampened our spirits on the night but finishing October at the summit of the division was a massive plus.