News and Views

Five Minute Puscas Hat-Trick Steals Win

30 November 2019
By 2019-11-30

George Puscas ended his goalscoring drought in dramatic fashion as he smashed in a second half hat-trick in just five minutes to give Reading a big win on the road at Wigan. The Royals looked to be heading for a defeat, with Puscas looking largely anonymous, until his three goals turned the fixture around and gave Reading three points as they pulled further away from the bottom three.

Reading were behind for most of the game after Wigan took the lead just after the half hour mark. Rafael made a save from a header after a corner but couldn't stop the rebound being scored from close range. Despite Reading having plenty of the ball in the first half they rarely threatened and instead it was Wigan that might have doubled their lead before half time but the ball defelcted just wide of Rafael's post. Puscas failed to take an opportunity towards the end of the half and it was looking like it might be another one of those days for the Reading striker.

However, Puscas pulled Reading level on 79 minutes, putting his penalty straight down the middle after Boye was fouled in the area. A minute later Puscas twisted through the Wigan defence to put Reading ahead and get his second with an excellent finish. Garath McCleary, enjoying his time back in the Reading team, was provider with the cross that saw Puscas complete his dramatic quick-fire hat-trick - and an important win for Reading - on 84 minutes.

 

Discussion On This Story:

 hughsies no.1

» 01 Dec 2019 07:59

First 75 minutes - freezing cold, looking around at an empty stadium, looking at my team who just didn’t look like scoring and were being beaten by a dreadful Wigan side , thinking what the F am I still doing here...

Then as football has a funny way doing, it turned out to be a top away day, three goals, winning from behind and a Puscas hat-trick - making me realise why I was still there!

Views on the game:
- Team news was obviously worrying with no Ejaria or Swift and zero creativity in the middle of the park

- Wigan were dreadful, very sloppy goal for us to concede but aside from that offered nothing and certainly a team we should be beating with the quality in our squad

- Subs changed the game, Joao and Boye gave us energy and purpose and credit to Bowen switching to 4-4-2, it worked, but I believe the subs were more important than the system change

- Meite/ GMac - both give their all but in terms of quality are not on same level as Joao and Boye, obvious changes for next weekend

- Liam Moore on free kicks was a new one, he’s already on throw ins - goal kicks & pens next?

- Puscas - tbh he was offering nothing then scored 3 goals - fair play to Bowen for keeping him on. Sticking the penalty down the middle was brave too, happy for him to do nothing if he scores and wins us games. Hopefully this will boost his confidence

 St Pauli

» 01 Dec 2019 08:03

Thought about going to this, but was 213 miles away in Leith, Scotland, so went to Hibs Killie instead. No alcohol available inside the ground wtf?

 WestRoyal

» 01 Dec 2019 09:23



In ref to mccleary I think he has just as much quality as those two when played in his natural winger position and this was telling for the third goal. If Bowen plays a formation to accommodate a winger, mccleary will be involved for sure. I've seen nothing to suggest those two are on different levels but their introductions on this occasion made a direct impact.

 Snowflake Royal

» 01 Dec 2019 09:29



In ref to mccleary I think he has just as much quality as those two when played in his natural winger position and this was telling for the third goal. If Bowen plays a formation to accommodate a winger, mccleary will be involved for sure.
Didn't the third goal (as the one the other week when he definitely wasn't playing wide) come from McCleary pressing high centrally and stealing the ball?

Meite caused loads of problems in the first half. As he did against Leeds. To be honest I'd have fancied him to score the pen or Puscas's third if he was Johnny on the spot.

McCleary's first touch for much of the game was terrible.

EDIT: second viewing it was wider than I thought, so take it back, definitely from the wing.

That second goal. :)

 Jagermesiter1871

» 01 Dec 2019 09:41



Please no.

 WestRoyal

» 01 Dec 2019 09:47



In ref to mccleary I think he has just as much quality as those two when played in his natural winger position and this was telling for the third goal. If Bowen plays a formation to accommodate a winger, mccleary will be involved for sure.
Didn't the third goal (as the one the other week when he definitely wasn't playing wide) come from McCleary pressing high centrally and stealing the ball?

Meite caused loads of problems in the first half. As he did against Leeds. To be honest I'd have fancied him to score the pen or Puscas's third if he was Johnny on the spot.

McCleary's first touch for much of the game was terrible.

So your saying because he won the ball and scored or assisted when he was playing more central that is his best position. He looks a more accomplished player out wide, watching him over the years makes it pretty obvious. If swift has a couple of good runs out wide and cuts the ball back for a goal and scores another do you suddenly say he looks best out wide?

As for his touch which is usually decent yes it wasn't the best but wasn't that his first 90 mins this season? And what bearing does that have on his position

 Snowflake Royal

» 01 Dec 2019 09:55

Cabral - 6 very little to do, but spilled a tricky save into danger for their goal.
Yiadom - 6 some good some bad, provides a real out let, but still holds onto it too long too often and should mix up cutting inside with whipping in more crosses
Richards - 5 not a great game by his recent standards
Moore - 7 not a set piece taker :lol: but solid in defence
Morrison - 7 I love this guy in the middle of a three
Miazga - 7 defensively good as always but did 'block' Meite's piledriver. :lol:
Rinomhota - 6 quite than normal but more attacking responsibility that doesn't quite suit him
Pele - 7 some really good moments
McCleary - 6 created a goal and worked hard but no replacement for Swift or Ejaria and his second touch was too often a challenge.
Puscas - 4/9 before the pen, loose passing, plodding and poor control. After the pen sublime. That nutmeg for the second!
Meite - 8 my MotM until the goal flurry, gave us an out, forced free kicks, at the heart of all we did well going forward

Joao - 7 looked tidy and offered something different and more creativity compared to the bulldozer approach of Meite and Puscas. Before the goals I'd have said Puscas has to make way for him or Baldock.
Boye - 7 'won' the penalty. Still don't see much there tbh, skillful but never impresses me
Adam - N/A stream had gone down by the time he came on.

 Snowflake Royal

» 01 Dec 2019 09:59


Didn't the third goal (as the one the other week when he definitely wasn't playing wide) come from McCleary pressing high centrally and stealing the ball?

Meite caused loads of problems in the first half. As he did against Leeds. To be honest I'd have fancied him to score the pen or Puscas's third if he was Johnny on the spot.

McCleary's first touch for much of the game was terrible.

So your saying because he won the ball and scored or assisted when he was playing more central that is his best position. He looks a more accomplished player out wide, watching him over the years makes it pretty obvious. If swift has a couple of good runs out wide and cuts the ball back for a goal and scores another do you suddenly say he looks best out wide?

As for his touch which is usually decent yes it wasn't the best but wasn't that his first 90 mins this season? And what bearing does that have on his position
I think you've misunderstood, and missed my edit.

Yes, obviously McCleary is a winger first and foremost. I don't think we're better off playing 4-4-2 and wingers from the off, except when Swift AND Ejaria and maybe Olise are out. But if we do, then yes McCleary should be playing.

I don't think he's up to starting in place of both Swift and Ejaria centrally though. Subbing for one, yeah.

 Norfolk Royal

» 01 Dec 2019 10:09

Anyway, I was explaining to a chap I met while having a cigarette outside arbor half time that we were never going to score and that Puscas should be hooked off during the break.

He wasn’t hooked off obviously and got a hat-trick. Even my young daughter shook her head at me and mentioned my appalling punditry.

Well, there you go and elated as I was at the victory it shouldn’t disguise the fact that we were toothless for much of the game.

Fair play to Bowen for administering what must have been a scathing teamtalk at half time and Wigan must have been surprised when we brought on a bow-legged Messi in the second half (Boye) and a clearly up for it Jao. That did for them really.

The penalty looked soft for me. Not even sure what it was given for although I was right on top of the incident. Handball?

Puscas second goal. Just wow.

 Royalwaster

» 01 Dec 2019 10:35



Yeah don't change your job and going in for football commentary ... stone wall penalty ... could have given two, one for handball, second for going through Boye.

 morganb

» 01 Dec 2019 10:42



EFL Show (which we are always last on) said it was for handball not the challenge as Boye was already going down. They (Murray and Holloway) implied we were lucky it was given.

 Snowflake Royal

» 01 Dec 2019 10:45

Yeah in what world is running straight into someone and knocking them over with no attempt to play the ball long after it's been passed not a foul?

The handball? Not sure on the wording of the law these days. Clearly got blocked by his hand but it was in a relatively natural position down by his side... maybe a bit too extended from his body.


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