JAAP STAM was understandably frustrated at being held to a 1-1 draw by Fulham at Madejski Stadium this afternoon.
The visitors were down to 10 men with less than 40 seconds on the clock when Tomas Kalas was shown a straight red card for a foul on Modou Barrow.
Liam Kelly broke the deadlock just past the hour mark but Lucas Piazon earned Fulham a point in the 83rd minute, pouncing on a Joey van den Berg error.
Here is what Jaap said to the media after the final whistle:
On if he is disappointed about the draw…
Well you can say that again. It’s a game that you control basically from the start. Maybe it helps that they got a man sent off from the beginning, but that’s because of our doing. They want to build-up, they want to take risks, we wanted to be very aggressive going forward and we succeeded already in doing that in the first minute. That’s why we won the ball. Mo would’ve gone to goal, he got tripped and then they get the red card.
Of course then the plan becomes a bit different than what you normally would’ve been doing when they played 11 v 11. First you want to look how they react. What are they going to do? Are they going to go forward and try to attack, or sit in deep. They sat in deep, made gaps very, very small at times, even the two strikers going back into midfield which makes it very hard to get people on the ball in these pockets where you want to have your players because they know what we can do.
We still created a couple of moments where we were threatening in the box as well and could’ve had a couple of shots in the first half but we waited too long and got closed down. You know if you play against teams like that, you need to be patient and you need to wait for that moment. Even when teams are playing with 10, it’s not a guarantee that you’re going to be creating loads of opportunities.
In the second half we got that goal that we wanted to have. After that they need to make a decision to stay in deep or come out and press a bit more to maybe score that equaliser. We were aware that might happen, we spoke about that at half-time.
We got warned in the second half when they came out on the counter-attack, especially from our own corner kicks. They are a good team, they’ve got good players, quick and strong players up front so you don’t want to give anything away.
Then we basically give a goal away by a certain pass, first touch not good enough, they intercept it and you know the quality they have if they get at one v one against the goalkeeper they can finish it and that’s what they’ve done.
We went for that second goal, but it didn’t happen. It’s frustrating that you don’t get three points.
On van den Berg’s mistake…
He was very disappointed. But you can say is it only that or is it also the pass to him? Players need to learn from these kind of mistakes.
On Liam Kelly scoring again…
If he gets into a certain position then he’s got a great finish, a great shot. He almost scored two today. If you get into positions like that and you have great technique in shooting the ball then you need to do it. Liam Kelly is one of these players, Swifty as well and the players up front.
You can’t always make combinations until you walk the ball over the goal-line. Sometimes
you need to have a shot and just try it. Maybe the ball deflects and goes in or a corner kick. Liam is doing that and you see what it brings.
On playing against 10 men…
A lot of people think if you play against 10 men, you’ve got one extra man so it’s going to be easy to win that game. Most of the time you can see it’s more difficult because the opposition is dropping in deep, sometimes they’re in two banks, one of four, one of five so they don’t want to give any spaces away.
Sometimes you train on that but it’s all about making the right choices at the right time, the accuracy of your passing and movement.
Roy Beerens is back in full training with the squad, same with Garath McCleary. Jordan Obita is not training with the squad yet but the other two are so hopefully within a couple of days or a week they can join in as well. But they have been out for a couple of weeks and missed a big part of pre-season so first they need to build-up their condition as well.
Jon Dadi Bodvarsson is not training yet. He has a problem with one of the ligaments in his knee. It’s not that bad that he’s out for months. He’s out for a couple of weeks but he’s feeling OK at the moment. But running and turning and everything is a bit different than normal walking but he’s feeling quite OK. So it’s not going to be weeks and weeks.
On transfer latest…
Leandro Bacuna is a player we are interested in as everybody knows. But I haven’t spoken to anybody so I can’t tell you if it’s a done deal yet. Hopefully we can bring some extra players in.