Reading goalkeeper vows to win promotion for Paul McShane

Reading Chronicle

Fulham left their 16-year-old prodigy Ryan Sessegnon on the bench, despite it not being a school night, but they still created the better of the few chances in the first half.

Reading, who finished third in the table, will hope to protect a home record of just two defeats in the regular season and repeat their 1-0 win against Fulham in January to book a place at Wembley.

Reading manager Jaap Stam believes that his side's performance showed that all the talk of Fulham being favourites for promotion was premature.

Reading are 90 minutes away from Wembley with only Fulham in their way. "But we know what we can do, we are confident in what we do".

Reading were able to survive the final 10 minutes a man down when McShane was given his marching orders for a high challenge on Kevin McDonald.

"He's been very important for us throughout the season, but he's had injuries as well and other players needed to step up so we can win a game without Paul McShane".

Fulham boss Jokanovic appears to have a fully-fit squad to choose from for the Play-Offs, meaning tough decisions across the board.

Reading took the lead after 53 minutes through Jordan Obita, who is also a doubt for Tuesday after leaving the pitch on a stretcher with a twisted ankle. McShane won a tackle on the half-way line - cleanly despite the home fans' objections - and made ground through midfield before finding Obita out on the left.

Reading Chronicle
Paul McShane sent off as Reading earn playoff draw at Fulham

"Everyone's excited for the second leg, but there's still a game to play against a very good side, even though you've got home advantage".

"I'm not scared about the situation, that's football and yes there's potential for a penalty shoot-out, but there's one game in front of us and that's all".

But goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi is determined McShane's next match in a Reading shirt will be as a Premier League player.

Slavisa Jokanovic's men, by contrast, struggled to impose themselves for long spells in the game and suffered at the start of the second half in particular - falling behind in the 53rd minute when Obita rifled a shot across Marcus Bettinelli and in off the far post.

"Reading put us in a complicated situation (in the first leg) and we didn't find enough space for our combinations and we didn't move the ball with enough pace".

"We showed a good reaction after they scored".

"We need their support and I've spoke about it many times".




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