Coppell Happy With Owusu And Goater
Feature by Rob Cooper
Updated Thursday, 26th August 2004
Steve Coppell was pleased with the efforts of Shaun Goater and Lloyd Owusu, recalled to the side for last night's game at Oxford.
The frontline duo were making their first appearances of the season as the Royals rested regular forward pairing Nicky Forster and Dave Kitson.
And it was veteran forward Shaun Goater who scored Reading's first goal, tapping in a loose ball after Owusu had been denied by Oxford shotstopper Tardif.
The Bermuda-Ghana forward line could have scored more times but for a combination of good goalkeeping and rusty finishing.
Royals manager Steve Coppell admitted that he is lucky to have so many quality forwards available to him.
"It's a hell of a nice to conundrum to weave and we've still got Dean Morgan, so I'm happy with the permutations," said Coppell, speaking after last night's game.
"It's always difficult with a new front two, they think they've got to take the opportunity and every touch becomes over-important."
Whilst Reading's make-do forward line performed well, at the back the regular defence put in another quality performance.
Williams, Ingimarsson, Shorey, Murty and Hahnemann combined to keep Oxford out and record their third successive clean sheet.
With so many question marks surrounding the reliability of the Reading defence at the start of the season, and in particular the central two, the run of clean sheets is reassuring.
"Oxford had two experienced players up front, and the back four had to be tight together and on the same script. Collectively they did really well and worked as a unit," commented Coppell.
> Royals Face Watford In Round Two
> Oxford United 0 Reading 2 - MATCH REPORT