Kits not all overBy Nick Ive
March 16, 2009
Dave Kitson refuses to rule out a title charge despite Reading’s woeful form that has started to threaten their play-off chances.
Steve Coppell’s men have won just one match in eight and have not recorded a home victory in their last five following Saturday’s 1-0 defeat to Ipswich Town at Madejski Stadium.
It leaves them a whopping 10 points behind leaders Wolves and just four points above seventh-placed Preston, although they have two games in hand on most of their rivals.
Kitson started on Saturday following his loan switch from Stoke City, but the striker was unable to inspire his team-mates as Jon Stead hit the only goal to secure a 1-0 win for the Tractor Boys.
But he insisted: “Promotion is the goal and winning the title is a bonus. This club, for lots of reasons, needs to be in the Premiership next year. We are going to do all we can to make that happen.
“It is exciting more than anything else and that should drive us on because the top three and another couple of teams are all going through a sticky patch.
“I believe all three clubs are thinking ‘if we can put a run together that will be enough’, but saying and doing it are two different things.”
Reading’s home form is a real cause for concern and Kitson insisted: “I genuinely believe the home form will change.
“I can’t put my finger on the home form, but being at home or away won’t matter.
“Away games are just as precious. Games are getting fewer and we just need three points from all of them.”
Reading started superbly on Saturday and Kitson glanced a header on to the bar.
However, Coppell’s men were awful after that and failed to create any clear-cut chances.
Kitson continued: “From what I hear that has been the story of the last few games – making all the running and not getting the reward.
“I haven’t noticed the team is low in confidence. I haven’t seen enough games to comment. The mood is fine, buoyant, the same as when I left.
“They are a good bunch of lads and good players. Since I have been back we have hit the crossbar four times and drawn one and lost one.
“It is just one of those things you go through as a football club every now and again.
“Perhaps if my header had dropped in and a couple of other half chances we would have seen a very different game and been stood here talking about three points.”
Reading appear to be cracking under the pressure of chasing a place back in the Premier League, but Kitson added: “If there is pressure or expectancy on me I don’t feel it.
“We have nine games and when I am called upon I will do my best on the football pitch for this club.
“It is flattering a club takes you back. It breeds confidence in itself.”
Reading travel to Doncaster Rovers tomorrow night.
Coppell will again make changes to his team following Saturday’s defeat.
Kevin Doyle is likely to start, while Andre Bikey could also be recalled.
Glen Little picked up a foot injury against the Tractor Boys, but should be okay to play at the Keepmoat Stadium.
“I got trod on my toe and there is some blood in there, but I got it drained.
“It is a bit sore, but you just get on with it.
“I hope I’ll be all right for tomorrow. We’ll see how it settles down.”