Brian McDermott blasts Tottenham Hotspur display
By Rob Stevens • Published 17 Sep 2012 15:18 0 Comments
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Brain McDermott takes his under-performing Reading team to West Bromwich Albion on Saturday (3pm kick-off). Picture by Alicia Field 124904.
BRIAN McDermott accused his Reading players of showing Tottenham Hotspur too much respect in Sunday's 3-1 defeat at Madejski Stadium.
Two goals from Jermain Defoe either side of a Gareth Bale strike saw Spurs coast to their first Premier League win of the season.
And though Hal Robson-Kanu did net a stoppage time consolation for the Royals, they were second best all over the pitch from the first whistle to the last.
It made for grim viewing for Reading fans and McDermott made no excuses about his team's lackluster display.
"I didn't recognise us in the first half," he fumed. "I thought we were too submissive and didn't get on the ball enough. We weren't brave or in their faces. We were bordering on being too respectful.
"We had to make a change at half time, then we were better for 20 minutes but we needed to score in that period to make it a different game.
"Bale's goal killed us. We were a lot better in the period leading up to the goal but we came up against a top class side who played well. They deserved to win."
It was Reading's first home defeat in 11 games, while the win for Spurs eases the pressure on boss Andre Villas-Boas in their pursuit of a Champions League place.
"I know we'll play top class opposition and we'll lose games," added McDermott. "I can take losing but we can't have the way we lost the first half.
"Whatever the formation, it's about the mindset. That first half was not what we are about and not how we play, we didn't perform.
"What we have to do is move on quickly, you have to in this league. We can't have performances like the first half and expect to win. If we do what we're capable of, we have a chance of winning.
"Sometimes we were trying to play our way out of positions where you can't do that. Clear your lines, do what you have to, which is what we've always done since I've been manager.
"First half we never got to Tottenham. We didn't get to grips with it until the second half."
Reading had been without a Premier League game for 25 days following the postponement of the Sunderland game before an international break.
And though the squad did get a run-out against Peterborough United in the Capital One Cup and a friendly in Ireland, McDermott believes the period of inactivity did his side no favours.
"I think we needed a game," he argued. "We hadn't played in three-and-a-half weeks which is unheard of in any league, never mind the Barclays Premier League.
"We'll be better for the game, we know we can give a better account of ourselves. We scored late on, we had a good period and we'll move on quickly."
Royals return to Premier League action this Saturday with a trip to West Brom (3pm ko) and a reunion with ex-Reading striker Shane Long.
Alex McCarthy is likely to keep his place between the sticks after the ex-England U21 keeper was preferred to under-fire Adam Federici for the Spurs game.
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