Reading manager Jaap Stam was quite pleased with the way his team played at Newcastle in mid-August and of course that was a very important game for us after we had lost the two previous games at Fulham and at home to Huddersfield – both were big surprises.
So we came out of the home game against Reading with a good 4-1 win with two goals from striker Dwight Gayle, who is likely to start for Newcastle at Derby County on Saturday afternoon in the late kick-off game.
Rafa Benitez and Jaap Stam on August 17th
We remember after the game Stam wasn’t particularly impressed with Newcastle and he didn’t like the way his team conceded goals from set pieces.
Jaap has been talking to Sky Bet and he thinks the game was by no means a 4-1 game.
This is what he said when asked if Newcastle were the best team in the Championship this season:
“Well, when we played them, no I didn’t think at that time they played particularly well.”
“But to be fair, it is a great club, a beautiful club, they’ve brought a lot of new players in so they need to get used to each other as well.”
“The Newcastle game we lost 4-1, but the first 3 goals that we conceded were from set pieces.”
“If you look at the play on the field in possession wise I think we have done well against them.”
In that game the lads were short of confidence but it’s always amazing what wins can do for a team – and that win was the first of four in a row that we managed before the International break.
After Reading we then beat Bristol City away, Cheltenham Town in the EFL Cup second round tie at home and then Brighton at home.
In those games we kept three clean sheets and scored five goals so we were getting on track a little bit.
Now we have to win our next two games – both away – at Derby and then at QPR.
We have seven games coming up by October 1st and it would be good to get as many wins as possible including getting through to the 4th round of the EFL Cup by beating Wolves at home.
We want to win as many games as possible and then we’ll see where we are after the game at Rotherham on Saturday October 1st – when the next two week International break starts.
Here’s the tough schedule coming up.
September Sat 10 17:30 A Derby County Tue 13 19:45 A QPR Sat 17 15:00 H Wolves Tue 20 17:45 H Wolves - EFL Cup 3rd round Sat 24 17:30 A Aston Villa Wed 28 19:45 H Norwich City October Sat 01 15:00 A Rotherham
What do you think?