David happy with his side’s performance
- David Wagner discusses draw with Reading
- Head Coach delighted with his side's performance
- Wagner praises Nahki Wells' nerves on late penalty
Head Coach David Wagner was very happy with his side’s performance in today’s 2-2 Emirates FA Cup Third Round draw with Reading at the John Smith’s Stadium.
“I am very happy about the performance the boys showed today. This was the first time we were able to play a game without the pressure of the (Sky Bet Championship) table on our backs and the boys did it very well,” David told htafc.com.
“I thought we dominated the game for a very long time; we only had a period between the 75th and 85th minutes where we struggled a little bit. In the rest of the game, we were very good.
“We were good with our reactive pressure; we were good with our passing and created some great chances in good moments. I was very happy with the performance; we scored two goals and created very good moments.
“Everybody in the Stadium today saw a very nice game played with a lot of speed; very good, full throttle football.
“I thought we were the better team and the result hurts us a little bit, but everybody can see we are always able to come back in a game like we did today.”
Town’s impressive showing was capped by an excellent first goal of the game from Jamie Paterson just after the hour mark, with Wagner happy that the players listened to his half time advice:
“At half time we told the lads they had done very well, but sometimes on the wings we had to centre the ball quicker. This was what Jason (Davidson) did in that moment; his first touch was good, his centre was good and Jamie Paterson showed very good movement in the box.
“He scored a header, so that was a perfect moment for him and a surprise moment for me! I enjoyed it.”
Much of the post-match discussion will surround the referee’s decision to book Nahki Wells for diving after the Bermudian striker went down under goalkeeper Ali Al-Habsi’s challenge with the game at 1-0, but David explained that everyone has to accept the referee’s decisions.
“It is bad if after such a great game, we have to speak about the refereeing; then, in my opinion, something was wrong in this game.
“I thought today there were very big moments in the game where the referee made some decisions that in my opinion weren’t right, but in the end we have to accept it.
“It doesn’t make sense to speak about decisions as we have to accept them. From my position Nahki’s looked like a clear penalty, but the referee was nearer to the situation and we have to accept that.”
Reading went into a 2-1 lead, only for Wells to show nerves of steel to convert a 93rd minute penalty after a foul on Harry Bunn.
David continued: “At the end it was clear, at 2-1 down, the only chance to stay in the competition was to score. We stayed on our front foot and changed the formation to only play with three men at the back, bringing Ishmael and ‘Huddy’ up front as well.
“We tried to play with the long ball and win the second ball and it worked.
“Nahki did well. He’s very confident at the moment and after the last penalty was missed, we made the decision he would take the penalties if he is on the pitch. Today he had one in a very important moment and this should give him even more confidence.”
Now the Terriers face a replay at the Madejski Stadium on 19 January in the midst of a busy period of games, but David was not complaining:
“In the end, we are in the competition. Playing games is better than training; that’s what I’ve said to the boys! We have the rematch and will try to win so we’re in the next round.
“Playing away and rematches for cup draws are part of the game, so we accept that. We will find a good solution to the travelling to Reading and then to Brighton so the boys are as fresh as they can be.”
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