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DESERVED WIN

Posted on 1 April 2007  - 12:00

Martin Jol felt we gained a 'well-deserved win' against Reading as Robbie Keane's penalty took us into sixth place in the Premiership on Sunday.

Martin Jol felt we gained a 'well-deserved win' against Reading as Robbie Keane's penalty took us into sixth place in the Premiership on Sunday.

The only mystery was that the scoreline remained at 1-0 as we saw a host of chances come and go with two goals disallowed for offside and both Marcus Hahnemann and Adam Federici - Hahnemann was replaced at half-time because of injury - making fine saves in the Reading goal. Steed Malbranque also hit the post as we ended with 21 efforts on goal.

Reading played their part especially in the first half when Leroy Lita headed against the post and Paul Robinson was forced into a fine save to deny Dave Kitson.

In the end Keane's spot kick - awarded for handball against Greg Halford - just before half-time was enough for the three points and a fifth-successive win in the Premiership.

"We had three chances on the first 15 minutes with Steed Malbranque, a Robbie Keane one-on-one and Dimitar Berbatov but then again, Reading also had chances and Paul Robinson made one exceptional save," reflected Martin.

"If you look at the chances over the 90 minutes they had three where we had 15 or more, so we well deserved this win.

"Reading are a very good team and sometimes they had seven or eight players in the final third of the field and you don't see that often in the Premiership.

"They attack down both flanks, support from midfield and are a threat, so to keep a clean sheet was also good for us.

"Six weeks ago we were around ninth or tenth but now we're up to sixth, despite all the matches we've played."

As for the penalty, many pundits felt it was a tough call on Halford although without question the ball did strike his hand right in front of referee Alan Wiley.

"I think five out of 10 referees would give it," added Martin. "But we created a number of chances - it wasn't just about the penalty."




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