Paul’s so relieved to be Bac in business
PAUL CLEMENT hopes his Reading side have turned the corner after ending their long wait for a Championship win in a Deepdale thriller.
Leandro Bacuna was the unlikely matchwinner, slotting home his first goal since last November with nine minutes left.
Striker Sam Baldock gave the Royals a 23rd-minute lead against the run of play with a clinical strike before Daniel Johnson levelled eight minutes later.
Tiago Ilori netted his first Reading goal and first for nearly four years to put Reading in front again only for Callum Robinson to equalise with a tap-in.
But there was still time for Dutch midfielder Bacuna to grab all three points.
A relieved Clement said: “We haven’t had that winning feeling in the league for a while so it’s great.
“We had to work hard for it because it was a very close game, but it’s those margins which has been all season.
“Fortunately we managed to get those little details right and it saw us over the line.
“We are very, very happy and we’ve got to use that as a catalyst to move forward.
“We conceded two goals, we gave up a lot of chances and I can’t say we dominated but it was a very close game and we just came out on top.
“I was very pleased with the mental strength of the team.”
The result saw the Royals leapfrog Preston but stay in the Championship drop zone.
North End boss Alex Neil said: “I’m really disappointed we didn’t get anything from the game.
“I thought we had more than enough opportunities to get something.
“But on the other hand if you need to score four goals to get a win, well that’s not a good position to be in.
“I’m frustrated because I’ve been involved in games where we’ve played poorly and not deserved anything, but I didn’t think that was the case.
“Our last two results had been good but we had to twice come back and then we were hit with a sucker punch when we tried to win it.
“Sometimes you want to go on and win the game when you could maybe solidify.”
RARE JOY: Leandro Bacuna