Reading manager Mark Bowen has insisted he ‘won’t forgive’ Matt Miazga for his actions after the final whistle at Pride Park yesterday, but also reiterated that Tom Lawrence holds as much blame.
It was an entertaining game yesterday. Two teams who’d been progressing throughout the season and both with top-six hopes, but it was Derby who struck first.
Lawrence curled an effort into the top-corner to get the ball rolling, before Wayne Rooney scored a second in quick succession on the stroke of half-time.
Reading came out looking for a way back in, and soon after the hour-mark they had a goal back through Andy Rinomhota. But the game would finish 2-1 in Derby’s favour, and after the final whistle and incident broke out between Lawrence and Miazga.
Lawrence appeared to push his head into Miazga’s, who reacted furiously, putting his hands into the face of Lawrence on at least three occasions.
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Speaking to Derby Telegraph after the game, Bowen had this to say on the incident:
“I’ve been told Matt was headbutted and he swung for the fella. He shouldn’t do it and I won’t forgive him for doing it but he was reacting to something in his face. It is two red cards, I have no complaints.”
Yesterday marked the second round of fixtures since the restart, with eight more remaining in the Championship – both Derby and Reading then have eight games to try and break into the Championship’s top-six.
“We’ve got games coming thick and fast,” continued Bowen. “You have to be more disciplined than that. Until I see it properly it’s hard to comment. It’s a disappointing end to a really frustrating afternoon.”
It was a sour end to what was a good game of football yesterday. Both players were in the wrong but looking at the footage, Miazga has clearly reacted the worse, having appeared to slap Lawrence with force.
Lawrence did well not to break out into a full-on fist fight with the American, but both will now miss the next three games in the Championship – huge blows for either side.