Dagenham & Redbridge 1 Reading 2

Last updated : 12 August 2008 By Footymad Previewer
Summer signing Noel Hunt spared Reading boss Steve Coppell an embarrassing League Cup defeat at League Two Dagenham as he popped up with a last-minute winner.

Irish ace Hunt, who also had a hand in Reading 's opener, struck his first goal for the club just when the in-form Daggers were threatening to cause an upset.

Reading boss Coppell, who revealed afterwards that his team had been held up in bad traffic on their way to the match, fielded a fairly strong side but two of his young stars put the Royals into a deserved 26th minute lead.

A Bobby Convey cross was knocked on to the woodwork by Shane Long and local boy James Henry headed stabbed home the rebound to mark his full debut with a goal.

Reading then took control of the game and the home team were fortunate to be only one goal down going into half-time.

It was only really after the goal that Reading's class came to the fore during the opening period and Henry could have had a second.

But he shot wide after collecting a fine pass from Bobby Convey. The USA international then found himself on the end of a flowing Reading move and keeper Tony Roberts made one of a few saves.

Dagenham, who hit Chester for six at the weekend, came back strongly after the break and equalised through Solomon Taiwo's stunning 25-yard strike in the 68th minute.

They even had chances to take the lead before Reading regained their composure and Hunt showed why Coppell snapped him up from Dundee United this summer with a neat finish and a cartwheel celebration after a good run and pass from Long.