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Dublin: 7 °C Tuesday 22 May, 2018

Destiny Calling: Reading's promotion was 'meant to be'

Manager Brian McDermott says the club’s return to the Premier League exorcises last year’s playoff loss.

Reading's Manager Brian McDermott celebrates promotion at the end of last night's game.
Reading's Manager Brian McDermott celebrates promotion at the end of last night's game.
Image: Adam Davy/EMPICS Sport

READING MANAGER BRIAN McDermott says the club’s promotion to the Premier League has exorcised the demons of last season’s play-off loss.

Reading sealed promotion by beating Nottingham Forest 1-0 on Tuesday thanks to Mikele Leigertwood’s 81st-minute winner at the Madejski Stadium.

The club were last in the English top-flight in 2008 but were just a win away from achieving the feat last term.

However, things did not go according to plan in the Championship playoff final, as Swansea City emerged with victorious in front of over 86,000 fans at Wembley.

McDermott said winning promotion made last season’s heartbreak worth it.

“I’m just so pleased that we’ve secured promotion tonight,” McDermott told Sky Sports.

“The players deserve so much credit, our staff deserve so much credit. It’s been an incredible time really, the last year.

“It wasn’t meant to be last year, for whatever reason. In a way it tests your resolve and you can see what you’re about as a person and what the group are about as people.

“Losing that game at Wembley – it took me a couple of months to get over that, and some. We just had to dig in and we’ve done that. This makes it all worthwhile.”

McDermott’s men have enjoyed an incredible streak over the last three months, taking 46 of the 51 points available during their last 17 Championship fixtures.

“It says everything about this group of players, to get on a run like that. But it’s not just about the last 17 games, it’s about the last 30-odd,” he said.

“If you look at the run and how many points we’ve accumulated over that time, we’ve won in all sorts of different ways. The players we’ve got here are fantastic and I believe they can all play in the Premier League.”

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Steven O'Rourke

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