City chief admits dramatic Reading draw stings but his troops will bounce back in promotion fight
Daniel Farke will put his arms around his Norwich City players and push them on to clinch Premier League promotion after a heartbreaking 2-2 draw on Wednesday night against Reading.
The Canaries trailed until the 86th minute but goals from Ben Godfrey and Christoph Zimmermann appeared to have sealed a memorable win in the race to the top flight.
Andy Rinomhota’s 97th equaliser denied Farke’s side a ninth consecutive league victory, and cut short the celebrations at Carrow Road.
“They are young lads and they are emotional but it was even like the older guys had tears in their eyes,” said Farke. “We were so close to win an important game. We were so close to reaching something special.
“At 2-1 we had brilliant chances to score the third goal or to keep the ball. I will put my arms around the young lads and we will speak with them because the commitment was there. We have to accept football is not always fair.
“We will be disappointed for a day and then we will go again.
“My players invested everything. We had 75pc possession, had more than 20 shots on the goal. Reading had two shots and scored from both. You have to accept these type of days. After 85 minutes when it was 1-0 to them you feel it might be the case it is not going to go for us.
“We tried everything and changed the base formation. The Reading keeper was outstanding and made some brilliant saves.
“But we turned the game and to win would have been well deserved.”
Norwich remain six points clear of second-placed Leeds and a point further ahead of Sheffield United with five league games left.
“We are not too addicted to watching the table. We don’t think about it every day.
“We are just greedy to win football matches,” said Farke. “We should have won this one. Reading were well-structured and organised and it was difficult but we found some solutions. Sadly we have been on the sunny side in stoppage time. We have to accept we are on the wrong side of it this time.
“Reading is a good possession side and if this team is willing to come and play with five defenders and give us the ball then it is a sign of our quality and we take this as a compliment. You are totally allowed to park the bus. I won’t complain.
“The only shame was we could not score first. We had so many good chances. It feels unfair. We had two penalty incidents with Teemu (Pukki) and Tom (Trybull).
“They were two clear penalties. It feels like everything was against us.”