Ruben Selles wants Reading to find ‘extra percentage’ in push for late goals

By Sports Desk March 09, 2024

Reading manager Ruben Selles called on his side to rediscover that “extra percentage” after they failed to capitalise on their second-half dominance in the 2-1 defeat at home to Wycombe.

Wanderers went ahead early on through a superb overhead kick from on-loan defender Nigel Lonwijk but Reading equalised with 16 minutes left thanks to Sam Smith’s 10th goal of the season.

However, the visitors then clinched a dramatic 88th-minute victory when Beryly Lubala netted a penalty after Clinton Mola had clumsily fouled Chem Campbell in the home area.

“We are creating and putting ourselves in situations to score,” Selles said. “But we need to find that extra percentage at the end to make the chances count, to make the goals.

“We were not near to being ourselves in the first half. We suffered in certain situations that we should not have suffered.

“We were disconnected in some of those moments, but in the second half we were the team who wanted to do things. We were the best team on the pitch.

“Sometimes that happens in football, when you don’t play well for all of the 90 or 100 minutes, but we were able to come back, to get it to 1-1. And then from one of Wycombe’s few attacks in the second half, it came down to that penalty that we could have easily avoided.

”The atmosphere was fantastic, the crowd was with us even though we were not at our best in the first half.

“In the second half, you could feel it every time we were approaching the goal and when we scored. The environment was really good.”

Wycombe picked up their second win in six league matches, much to the delight of manager Matt Bloomfield.

“I thought that we were absolutely excellent in the first half. Maybe as good as we have been in my tenure here for 45 minutes. We were very good,” he said.

“We could have been further ahead and I was slightly disappointed at half-time that we weren’t.

“It was never going to be the same in the second half and Reading used their athleticism a lot once the game had spaced out.

“They used that incredibly well, we knew that they are a good team.

“We had to dig in at times but we then managed to find a special moment at the end [Lubala’s penalty]. That was incredibly pleasing.

“It was disappointing to give their goal away from a set-piece situation and we knew then that we had to transition into more of a low block.

“It was a case of protecting the space behind us. The athleticism that Reading have was causing us issues.

“As well as a growing team, I want us to be a winning team.”

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