Relief as Royals Hunt down first victory
Reading registerd their first league win of the season as they ran out 3-1 winners against Barnsley at Oakwell this afternoon. Having gone behind to Andy Gray's early opener, Alex Pearce and a brace from Noel Hunt ensured the three points went to the Royals.
Full report by Rory O'Sullivan:
Something seems to be clicking for the Royals at the moment. Where they have looked nervous, they now brim confidence. Where they have looked backward-thinking, they now gallop toward the horizons of opposing territory. This is only true, however, on the evidence of a well-earned 3-1 victory away at struggling Barnsley.
Indeed, despite an excellent opening from the visitors, it was Simon Davey's Barnsley that took the lead when Andy Gray directed a header beneath Adam Federici.
The Royals were back in the game soon enough, however, when skipper Pearce capitalised on some indecision in the Tykes' penalty area to hoist a powerful left-footed shot into the top corner.
Noel Hunt, who has been recently criticised for his performances up front, proved why the arrivals of Gregorz Rasiak and Jobi McAnuff should pose a selection headaches for manager Brendan Rodgers.
The Irishman scored an excellent brace here and his influence may be responsible for the exit of Barnsley boss Davey, who left the club through mutual consent following a spell of results that leaves the Yorkshire club at the foot of the Championship and without a win to their name after five matches.
On the back of defeat in the Carling Cup to Barnsley, however, Reading, would have been anxious themselves that they would see their winless streak match that statistic.
Hunt had other ideas, however, and coolly slotted home a penalty on 53 minutes following keeper Luke Steele's collision on Jimmy Kebe that may or may not have been a legitimate penalty.
Nevertheless, the Royals excellent resilience at times at managed will not simply be encouraged by his side's ability to bounce back from an early setback but more delighted that his system is yielding goals, especially away from home.
Hunt then put the game beyond doubt just a minute after giving the Royals a 2-1 lead. He once again built on Kebe's industry when he glanced the Malian winger's cross past Steele and beneath a set of rather disgruntled Barnsley supporters.
Adam Federici - 7
Liam Rosenior - 5
Alex Pearce - 6
Matthew Mills - 6
Ryan Bertrand - 5
Jem Karacan - 6
Brynjar Gunnarsson - 7
Gylfi Sigurdsson - 7
Jimmy Kebe - 7
Hal Robson-Kanu - 7
Noel Hunt - 8
Michael Antonio (Kebe) - 6
Gregorz Rasiak (Robson-Kanu) - 6
Shane Long (Hunt) - 6