Gomes hails Royals display after draw at QPR

Reading boss Jose Gomes felt his side looked far from relegation strugglers in their 0-0 draw at QPR.

Rangers defender Toni Leistner twice fired against the bar at Loftus Road, where the home side finished the match strongly.

But second-from-bottom Reading, in their second game under Gomes, were the better team for long spells, especially in the first half.

Gomes said: “If you just watched this match, I think nobody could say we are at the bottom of the table, so beautiful they played and with fantastic confidence.

“I enjoyed the courage that my players showed today. The feeling is that we lost two points.

“We had maybe around 80 per cent of the possession in the first half – beautiful football and positive actions.

“Today we created a lot of chances. We played very positive football and played near QPR’s box for a long time.

“I’m happy with the things they tried to do but I am not happy with the result. I think we deserved to win today.”

The Royals are without a win in nine matches and have only managed one goal in their past five league games.

But Gomes said: “The way we are working and the energy that I feel from my players, the feeling is positive regarding what can happen in the future.

“We will talk about the mistakes we made and improve for the next games. The good thing is that the players accept my ideas.”

QPR manager Steve McClaren admitted his team initially struggled in the absence of Massimo Luongo.

Already without injured midfielder Geoff Cameron, McClaren might be without Luongo for as many as seven matches because of his involvement for Australia in the Asian Cup.

Jordan Cousins replaced him alongside Josh Scowen in midfield and Rangers looked disjointed in the first half.

McClaren said: “It was a game of two halves. They dominated the first half and it took us a while, with Luongo going out, to adjust with Jordan and Josh in there.

“We couldn’t quite get the press on Reading and they had too much possession, but we sorted that out at half-time and I thought in the second half we were excellent.

“I thought in the second half Josh and Jordan were very good and were instrumental in us just getting a bit of front foot – a bit of pressure on Reading.

“Once we did that and got about them we created chances. We’re disappointed and frustrated that we didn’t win the game, because in the second half we certainly had the best chances.”

Rangers were unable to secure a fourth consecutive win despite a rousing finish – and a decent shout for a penalty after Nahki Wells went down under a challenge from Andrew Rinomhota.

But they have kept three successive clean sheets, remain eighth in the Sky Bet Championship table, and McClaren is more than happy with their progress.

“I don’t think many teams win games on the bounce. In the Championship it’s so hard,” he said.

“That’s our third game in seven days and I thought in the second half we were strong. I’m delighted about that.

“It was also another clean sheet. We were keeping clean sheets before, stopped doing that and needed to get back to doing it.”

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Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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