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McDermott hails ´real´ Reading character

Reading manager Brian McDermott hailed his team’s character after their come-from-behind 3-2 win over West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.

A Romelu Lukaku brace looked to have West Brom cruising to victory at the Madejski Stadium, only for the hosts to stage a remarkable comeback.

Jimmy Kebe, Adam Le Fondre and Pavel Pogrebnyak netted in the final eight minutes as Reading moved to within three points of safety.

McDermott said the comeback was a sign of the character his team showed in getting promoted to the English Premier League.

“It was a struggle today. We had to stay in the game and they didn’t get the third goal, which would have finished the game off,” McDermott said.

“If you get a goal back, anything can happen.

“We have been 4-0 up and lost 7-5 this season. We have been on the wrong end of some high scorelines. Today we are on the right end and I am happy.

“The real Reading is the last eight minutes because that is what I have seen over the last three years – a phenomenal character, desire and resilience.

“You don’t normally win games when you are 2-0 down. We have a dressing room that is all going in the same direction. It is a big win for us.”

While Reading took a step towards safety with their second win in three league matches, West Brom slumped to their third straight loss.

West Brom manager Steve Clarke was stunned by the result and was at a loss to explain what occurred.

“We had good control and I certainly couldn’t see the finish to the game that happened. I am disappointed. I am not sure (what happened). I can’t be more honest than that,” he said.

“We should have scored four or five but then we lost a goal and for some reason we lost our shape and we lost our composure and conceded the two late goals that cost us the game.

“When you contrive to pull a defeat from what should be a comfortable victory then it is something we will have to look at.

“Football can be a strange game and today is one of those days.”

Sat 12 January, 2013
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