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Reading 1-0 Watford: George Puscas strikes as Royals sting the Hornets

Reading 1-0 Watford: George Puscas strikes as Royals sting the Hornets to continue their perfect start to the Championship season

  • George Puscas gave Reading the lead a few minutes before the half-time break
  • The Royals continue their perfect start to the Championship with fourth victory
  • The last time Reading won their first four league games they were promoted 

The last time Reading won their first four league games they were promoted. It is early days but things are certainly heading in the right direction under Veljko Paunovic.

Yes there was a touch of fortune to the win here but Paunovic could not have wished for a better start to life in English management. Watford have ambitions of bouncing straight back to the Premier League and consigning the Hornets to their first league defeat of the season signalled Reading’s own intentions this season.

It was the visitors who started the brighter and a man who has been heavily linked with a move to the English top flight who showed the most threat early on. Within minutes of the first whistle Ismaila Sarr found himself in behind the Reading defence. 

Reading continued their strong start to the season with a 1-0 home victory over Watford

The striker’s shot took a fortunate deflection from Craig Cathcart on its way into the net

Joao Pedro, fresh from his first goal for the club last weekend, released his strike partner, who in turn found Jeremy Ngakia. The marauding full back whipped in a delightful cross but Tom Dele- saw his header blocked.

Moments later and this time it was down the left where Watford posed the threat. First Dele-Bashiru, who looked lively on his first start before being forced off through injury, teased a low cross across the face of the goal before wing back Kiko Femenia found his counterpart.

Ngakia arrived at the back post but the 20-year-old almost had too much time and scuffed his effort wide.

Watford were intent on pressing Reading high up the pitch and Sarr almost broke the deadlock after intercepting the ball by doing just that. Driving into the box, Liam Moore did well to get back and put the pressure on. Sarr found the side netting.

There comes a risk with a high press and in the 18th minute Reading exposed it. Yakou Meite found space in between the midfield and defence and fed Michael Olise. One on one with Craig Cathcart he shifted the ball to the left but fired just over. A sign that Reading could have some joy.

However it was Watford who were just inches away from taking the lead. Joe Garner curled a free-kick with venomous pace onto the crossbar from the edge of the box. Another good opportunity gone.

The hosts had a touch of fortune to the win but Veljko Paunovic’s perfect start continues

Vladimir Ivic will know the importance of taking chances in this division and his side were punished for lacking a clinical touch just before the break.

The Hornets had been warned with Meite calling goalkeeper Ben Foster into action moments before. Although there was a huge slice of luck with George Puscas’ first goal of the season. Tom Holmes zipped the ball into the man who replaced Lucas Joao in attack. After a sharp touch and turn he unleashed his effort. It found the net after taking a massive deflection.

Reading showed grit and steel as Watford tried to find the equaliser in the second half. Tom Cleverley and Glenn Murray were introduced but the Royals stood firm and Rafael Cabral was not tested. Frustration almost boiled over for Watford but Nathaniel Chalobah saw yellow for a rash challenge in injury time.

Reading have been away from the Premier League for seven years but after their strong start they might not be too far away from a return. 

MATCH FACTS

Reading XI: Rafael, Holmes, Richards, Moore, Morrison, Laurent, Rinomhota – Aluko (Tetek 84′), Olise (McIntyre 61′), Meite, Puscas.

Unused Subs: Southwood, Watson, Joao, Gibson, Azeez.

Goals: Puscas 41′.

Watford XI: Foster, Ngakia, Cathcart, Kabasele, Wilmot, Femenía (Cleverley 69′), Chalobah, Garner, Dele-Bashiru (Sema 37′), Sarr (Murray 82′), Joao Pedro.

Unused Subs: Bachmann, Pussetto, Quina, Troost-Ekong.




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