Reading 2 Blackburn Rovers 1: Tony Mowbray reaction

By

Rich Sharpe

Rovers Reporter

Amari'i Bell scored in the second half in Rovers' defeat at Reading

Amari’i Bell scored in the second half in Rovers’ defeat at Reading

Tony Mowbray felt Rovers were let down by their quality in the final third, not their performance level, after slipping to a defeat at Reading.

Rovers have now lost three games in a row having slipped to a 2-1 defeat at the Madejski Stadium.

Mowbray’s side controlled the game for long spells but fell behind in first half injury time as the hosts scored with their first shot on target through John Swift.

Rovers equalised with eight minutes to play, as Amari’i Bell atoned for his first half error, only to concede a winner within four minutes as Nelson Oliveira fired in the winner.

“I thought the performance was good, we controlled it for long, long spells, yet we didn’t get any points,” Mowbray said.

“We’re disappointed, but performance wise it was okay. We controlled it but didn’t have end product in the final third, the final 20 yards wasn’t very good.

“I think they probably had three shots and scored two goals which is a huge frustration for us.

“The performance level was good, we worked hard, but the last 20 yards we didn’t have the right quality, too many crosses over the bar, too many crosses not picking men out in the middle.

“We’re left frustrated again.

“I have said to the team that if they play like that between now and the end of the season then we will win plenty of games.

“It wasn’t as if peppered their goal with shots, but we got in to some great areas, at times we broke 4v2 but couldn’t pick the right pass which is stuff we’ve worked on this week.

“That’s football. We’ve been a team in the bottom three of a league and you have to scrap and fight and I think they hung on for dear life and one bit of quality from a centre forward, we paid the price.”

It is three consecutive defeats to Rovers who slipped to 14th in the table.

Rovers pressed Reading high all evening, but despite the hosts repeatedly giving the ball away, they couldn’t profit.

“The confidence is there, there was no shortage of confidence. We were on the front foot but just couldn’t pick that final pass. We got in to some great positions,” Mowbray added.

“I’m putting it in to context of where we are as a football club, we’re doing okay, let’s not get down that we’ve lost a few games.

“There was an expectation the team beat up yet there’s no problem, I’ll keep them going.

“We have a massive game to look forward to (against Middlesbrough) and we will win plenty of games if that’s our performance level.

“It was a huge disappointment, particularly having just equalised. There looked to be only one team going on to win it.

“Yet we have fallen to a sucker punch and ended up with no points.

“We will keep going and look forward to the next match.”