Jose Gomes says victory over Nottingham Forest was “very, very important” in Reading’s battle to avoid relegation from the Championship.
The Royals picked up their first three points since the new boss arrived, ending an 11-match winless run in the process, with a 2-0 win over Forest at Madejski Stadium thanks to a John Swift strike and Jack Robinson own goal.
The visitors made life more difficult for themselves with two red cards in the second half and Reading took full advantage.
Here is what Gomes said after the game.
On the win…
I’m very happy for Reading. It wasn’t my game or my victory – it was Reading’s.
It is a very important three points today and for the future in the 19 battles we have ahead of us until the end of the season.
We need to keep the good aspects – the intelligent way we started the match, the way we pressed and recovered the ball in the midfield – and show the same behaviour in the upcoming matches.
On what the difference was from previous matches…
Today we scored – that was the big difference. I actually think we played more beautiful football at Man Utd last week but today we scored.
We had to be clinical in the right moment and we were. In the future we must play like this. It doesn’t matter if you have 70 per cent possession – we must put the ball in the net and have the taste of scoring a goal.
I want the players to feel this flavour again – the taste of scoring. I want my players to want to score and score and score. They tried and deserved three points.
On the debuts for Ejaria and Baker…
They did well. Baker only trained with us twice so that’s why he was on the bench.
But it’s important to say – the solution is not in the new players. It must come from the players who started the season at Reading.
They are part of the problem but they are the only solution we have in our hands. They are working very hard and are taking on my ideas. They really want this togetherness. We are together like a family and this is the most important thing.
On the players he left out…
Harriott couldn’t play because he has a small muscle problem. Kelly being absent was my option.
Meite twisted his ankle two and half months ago. He wanted to show me he was really brave when I came in. With the pain he tried but it’s better to take out all the pain he is feeling. When he’s ready he will come back without any pain.
On if the result can galvanise the club…
It’s a very strong step to galvanise the club again but we must give the second step – it must be a very secure one. The next game must be a very strong and safe step for the track we want to follow.
On the two red cards…
We had the same issue at Millwall. We have the football rules and it is the referee that controls this. My focus is on what my players are doing and how can I help them to improve and be better in the next match. The other things are not to do with me.
On if he was confident of winning at 1-0…
What I felt from the bench was that the game was under control.
They only created a goal situation in the last minute when they took the ball from our mistake and tried to dribble around the goalkeeper. During all the game I don’t remember any goal situations or any dangerous offensive action from a Nottingham player. This happened because my players were really brave to press very high. We recovered the ball very high, we closed the spaces for the Nottingham players and we didn’t allow them to play and take the best decisions.
That’s why I say my players deserved these three points.
On any new signings…
Not yet. I hope that we can bring another player in. The solution is with these players.
The market is open, we are playing with these players and they are doing very, very well. They have been working very, very hard and this is the only way that I know to achieve the success that we need and we deserve – work hard. Work hard every week, every training session we must give the maximum and after the result will arrive.
On if the squad was underperforming before he arrived…
I only talk about my team since I arrived. Since I arrived the players have been fantastic, fantastic attitude. They really want to play like we are playing, they want to win, they love the supporters and that’s how it works, together like a team. The board of directors, medical department, analysts, scouts, players, technical staff, supporters, it’s very important that we must work like a family. And we are.
On if Ilori wants to go to Sporting Lisbon…
Maybe it’s a normal situation that big clubs ask for important players. If we have good players, when the market is open we can understand that some clubs want good players. For sure a lot of other players we have working with us can have proposals from other clubs, we don’t know. I consider it normal. I don’t know if it’s a rumour or if it’s true. It’s completely normal that one club wants a good player in the January market.
What I saw today and felt during the week is that Tiago Ilori is completely focussed on the team. The other things, I don’t know.
On if he is looking to sign a goalkeeper this month…
I already gave my ideas to my board of directors. They have been working very hard to find the solutions that I’ve asked for. In the right moment, when we get the solutions, we will bring a player in and players will go out. Until then we need to just put the focus on our work, what we can do with these players and try to prepare tonight for the next match against Derby.