Hunt: Reading FC must show their nasty side
click to enlarge
Reading striker Noel Hunt. Pic by Alicia Field.
NOEL Hunt admits Reading will have to fight 'tooth and nail' if they are to get out of the desperate plight that they find themselves in.
Following Monday night's dismal 5-2 defeat to Arsenal, the Royals are now six points adrift at the bottom of the Premier League with a trip to Premier League champions Manchester City to come this Saturday.
Team spirit has been a forte of the Reading team in recent years and Hunt insists that the players will continue to stick together.
"We know what we've got to do," he said. "The boys in that dressing room need to fight, we know we're right in the middle of it."
"We're down there and we're there for a reason so it's a big thing that we need to rectify and quickly.
He added: "We need to work hard as a team because that's the only way we're going to get out of this.
"We know that we weren't at our best but we're working hard to get it right on the training field and we're all talking about it and discussing it openly, it's not like there's fingers being pointed."
However, what is rather more worrying for the fans is the inept manner of Monday's defeat at the Madejski, with none of the hunger or commitment normally associated with Brian McDermott's side.
A repeat of the first half performance would be unthinkable so Hunt believes that the club's pride is now at stake when they travel to the Etihad Stadium this weekend.
Royals can draw some comfort from the fact that they almost matched the defending champions when they last met them in the FA Cup, narrowly losing 1-0 in March 2011.
It is widely acknowledged that they emerged from that encounter with great credit and integrity, which is something they need to emulate if they are to get anything from Saturday's game.
"We've got to go there with a bit of desire and a bit of pride," said the Irishman. "I've been here a long time and I'm a proud man and I'm proud to play for this club.
"It's a big part of me so for me, there's nothing left to do but fight.
"We need to fight tooth and nail and try and win a few tackles and do it the
nasty way now."
Hunt continued: "We can't give up that's for sure, we need to rectify a few things on the field and the sooner the next game comes the better.
"We know we're leaking goals, it's clear for everyone to see. It's not just the defenders, it's the midfielders and strikers aswell.
"I'm not blaming anyone in particular, it's down to all of us."
Hunt is a popular figure among the fans and he is keen to put on a good show for them against City and ensure that they back the team all the way.
"We owe the fans and we need to rectify a few things.
"They nearly gave up on us last year, I remember being booed off the field at half time against Doncaster and we ended up winning the game and winning the league and that was in October."
This article appeared in Bracknell News 20 Dec 12