Sunday 15 December 2019

Lukaku 'devastated' by Reading rally

Reading 3 West Brom 2 Gerry Cox

Rarely can a player have put in such a complete Man of the Match performance and yet ended on the losing side as Romelu Lukaku did here.

The West Brom striker, on loan from Chelsea, might have left the Madejski Stadium with three goals and three points, only for an extraordinary turn of events to condemn his team to a defeat that appeared unthinkable with eight minutes remaining.

Lukaku had played his part to the full, scoring two goals, having another disallowed and hitting the woodwork twice in a superb display, but three goals in seven minutes undid all their good work.

The Belgian admitted afterwards that it was "really painful" and refused to accept plaudits for his display.

"It means I didn't work hard enough. I didn't score the other opportunities that I had. I want to score goals that win us games. I'm devastated and disappointed."

Jimmy Kebe sparked the revival with a diving header in the 83rd minute, and Jonas Olsson's foul on the same player allowed substitute Adam Le Fondre to score from the penalty spot before Pavel Pogrebnyak wrapped up an amazing comeback with the winning goal in the final minute.

Shane Long missed Saturday's game through injury and is unlikely to be fit in time for tomorrow's English FA Cup replay against QPR. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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