Reading climbed back into the automatic promotion places and denied Alex Neil his first win as Stoke boss with a 2-1 victory at the Select Car Leasing Stadium on Sunday.
The Royals took the lead after less than 120 seconds when Lucas Joao capitalised on poor defending to fire in his second of the season (2), but Stoke hit back before the break through Ben Wilmot’s deflected effort (40).
Joao then restored the lead for the home side with a powerful penalty (57), to which the Potters could find no sufficient response.
Paul Ince’s Reading climb back into second as a result of their fifth win of the season – and fourth straight victory on home soil – while Stoke continue to hover down in 19th, with eight points from eight games so far.
How Ince’s Royals continue to exceed expectations
Before the game could even begin to settle into a rhythm in Berkshire, Reading had the ball in the back of the net.
Joao ghosted through the middle of two Stoke defenders and drew goalkeeper Jack Bonham inexplicably from the box, before firing a shot goalwards that Aden Flint swiped at and failed to prevent from crossing the line.
data-id=”id_94c7a2c9-2af9-41cb-aaf9-4746fb8e9013″ data-is-live-stream=”false” data-lite=”true”
data-options=”” data-originator-id=”49″ data-originator-handle=”brightcove-sport-gb”
data-package-name=”” data-provider=”brightcove” data-player-id=”DESF5xFjJ”
data-sensitive=”false” data-sdc-id=”5887123″ data-sdc-video-id=”94c7a2c9-2af9-41cb-aaf9-4746fb8e9013″ data-sport-category=”” data-state=”loading”
data-video-ad-unit=”videoplayer” data-video-blacklisted-originator-ids=”” data-video-id=”ref:94c7a2c9-2af9-41cb-aaf9-4746fb8e9013″ data-video-type=””
Stoke saw a lot more of the ball thereafter, but an organised Royals defence restricted them to shots from distance, with Joe Lumley holding onto hopeful efforts from Lewis Baker and Jacob Brown, while at the other end, Shane Long fired over from eight yards out.