Mooney beaming after hat-trickBy Nick Ive
September 11, 2008
Dave Mooney rattled in a hat-trick as Reading reserves thumped Lewes 10-1 at Madejski Stadium yesterday.
Last season in the Premier Reserve League, Royals faced a Chelsea side who fielded £20million superstar Andriy Shevchenko, Steve Sidwell and Tal Ben Haim.
Yesterday in front of a crowd of less than 200 at Madejski Stadium, Steve Coppell’s fringe players experienced life in the Combination League against Conference side Lewes’s second-string.
Just how valuable this level of football is to Reading remains questionable as Brian McDermott’s men cantered home.
Sam Sodje opened the scoring on 20 minutes when he glanced home James Henry’s cross. The central defender added a second header and Reading’s fifth just before half-time, but was denied a first-half hat-trick by an offside flag.
Mooney, who had already missed two clear chances, made it 2-0 with his first goal for his new club following his £200,000 switch from Cork City when he flicked the ball over his marker and coolly finished.
Leroy Lita made it 3-0 from the penalty spot after he was brought down by keeper Dean Ruddy and the striker hit his second on 40 minutes after combining superbly with Mooney.
Lewes netted a consolation goal eight minutes after the restart courtesy of Danny Campbell, but Reading again took control. James Henry made it six after a neat turn and finish.
The hapless Lewes defender Goran Crnobrnja headed into own net from Henry’s cross before Lita missed his chance of a hat-trick with 19 minutes to go when the penalty he took with his less favoured left foot was saved.
Mooney, though, added his second seven minutes from time when he crashed home substitute Nicholas Bignall’s excellent cross. Oliver Bozanic added the ninth and Mooney completed the rout with his third.
Reading reserves: Federici, Kelly, Golbourne, Sodje (Kamdjo 78mins), Murty (Hateley 84mins), Bozanic, Spence (Bignall 75mins), Convey, Henry, Mooney, Lita. Subs not used: Andersen, Frewen.