Pressure Grows on Reading Boss Brian McDermottby Jack Kitson / 10 December 2012, 09:42Tweet
The media microscope is now firmly on Reading boss Brian McDermott following Saturday's defeat to relegation-rivals Southampton. The newly-promoted club have fallen six points adrift of safety after a run of four consecutive losses. One win from their last 15 matches is most certainly relegation form and a stark transformation in form is needed if they are to avoid the drop at the end of the campaign.
To be fair to Reading luck has simply not been on their side with each of their last four defeats by just a single goal. However, they simply must start winning matches, starting with a huge game away to fellow strugglers Sunderland on Tuesday.
Both teams have endured torrid seasons, with Sunderland registering just two wins from their last 23 top flight games. The Black Cats are now also winless in four and fell into the relegation zone last weekend following a 3-1 defeat to Chelsea. Manager Martin O'Neill remains the 13/8 favourite in the Premier League Sack Race, while McDermott can be found at 4/1. Meanwhile Man City boss Roberto Mancini has had his odds cut to 9/2.
McDermott is likely to be given time but faces a tricky festive period, with matches against Arsenal and Man City just before Christmas. The 51-year-old insists that his players have what it takes to keep the Royals in the league but will no doubt look to add to his squad in January. Paddy Power have priced Reading at 5/2 to avoid the drop, while QPR remain the short-priced 8/15 to go down.