Royals ready for Toon visit

Simon Peach

READING manager Brian McDermott hopes his side can replicate the battling spirit shown against QPR last night when they go in search of a first Premier League win against Newcastle this weekend.

The Royals have so far secured only two points from their four opening games since returning to the top flight as Championship winners.

Their only victories this season have come in the League Cup in which they twice came from behind to win at QPR last night to set up a last-16 tie against Arsenal.

Kaspars Gorkss, Nicky Shorey and Pavel Pogrebnyak scored the goals in the hard-fought 3-2 victory and McDermott hopes his side show similar spirit on Saturday.

"I was proud of my team and the way they came back," the Reading boss said.

"I talked about identity and the last two games in the Premier League against Spurs and West Bromwich Albion I just feel we have not performed to a level.

"Our identity as a team is what you saw tonight."