Brian McDermott did not disguise his relief after seeing Reading record their first victory in nine matches on Saturday.
Pavel Pogrebnyak’s fifth-minute goal proved to be the winner for Reading at home to fellow promoted club West Ham United in the English Premier League clash at the Madejski Stadium.
Having suffered a nightmare run of seven defeats in succession during November and December, Reading’s much-needed win moves them off the foot of the table at the expense of Queens Park Rangers, who host Liverpool on Sunday.
“It’s a great relief and I thought it was a real resilient performance,” McDermott said.
“We had to stand up to West Ham today and I thought we did that.
“It was a great finish by Pavel in the first half and Jem (Karacan)’s hit the bar in the second half. I thought we needed the second goal but I thought we managed the game well in the last 10 minutes.
“They have had that one opportunity that they didn’t take so every point in this division is precious. We have realised that and it is a good win for us today.
“We are so pleased today because it was a great, great show of strength and show of unity at the club. Our fans will go home happy tonight because they have got the three points and that is the most important thing for us.”
West Ham manager Sam Allardyce blamed a James Collins mistake at the back and Ricardo Vaz Te’s profligacy in front of goal for his team’s narrow loss.
“We shot ourselves in the foot from the early stages,” he told BBC Sport.
“James Collins has been solid for us this season but he made a basic error and they took full advantage.
“Reading defended deep in numbers and (Ricardo) Vaz (Te) has missed a glaring, glaring chance and two errors mean we have not taken any points against them.
“We are bitterly disappointed not to come away with a point and now we are without James (Collins) and Kevin (Nolan) through suspension for an important game against Norwich.”