Jose Gomes: Reading boss laments lacklustre defensive display in Swansea defeat

Mike van der Hoorn puts Swansea 3-0 ahead at Reading
Reading were 3-0 down at home to Swansea by half-time on New Year's Day

Reading manager Jose Gomes said his side handed out some late "Christmas gifts" with their poor defending in a 4-1 defeat by Swansea.

Reading were 3-0 down by half-time and then 4-0 behind moments after the restart in Gomes' first home game.

"It was like we rolled out the red carpet and opened the door," he told BBC Radio Berkshire. "It looked like the players were scared."

Reading are second from bottom and five points adrift of safety after the loss.

Portuguese Gomes was appointed on 22 December after leaving Primeira Liga side Rio Ave. He has lost two and drawn one of his three games in charge so far.

The 48-year-old, who succeeded former Swansea boss Paul Clement at the Madejski Stadium, was encouraged by the performance in a 0-0 draw at QPR on Saturday.

After that game, he said his side played "positive, beautiful possession football" - characteristics he said they failed to show three days later against the Swans.

"In the first half we were without energy, without passion, without aggression," Gomes said. "It was like handing Christmas gifts to Swansea, the way we played.

"The four times they entered our penalty box, they scored three goals.

"It looked like the players were scared to play in their own stadium in front of their own supporters.

"Supporters come to the stadium to enjoy their team playing and winning. If they don't play well, they shout. It's normal, it's football.

"The players must show to them they have the energy. We're in a position in the table where we can't give anything to anybody. We must fix this."

The Royals are without a win in their past 10 league games and travel to Manchester United in the FA Cup third round on Saturday.