READING FC boss Paul Clement was full of praise for his new signings who starred in a 2-0 victory over Birmingham City in the Carabao Cup first round.

Royals were desperately seeking a first win of the season after league defeats to Derby County and Nottingham Forest.

A fierce left-footed strike from Yakou Meite gave Clement's men an 11th minute before John Swift netted a sumptuous free-kick in the second half.

The Blues were a much-improved outfit after the break and threatened to equalise before Swift's magic set piece sent Royals into the hat for tomorrow night's second-round draw.

Clement was particularly pleased with the contribution of Meite and feels the striking partnership of summer arrivals Sam Baldock and Marc McNulty was worth waiting for.

He said: "I didn't think it [the win] was far away because of our performances in the last two games. Forest was a decent away performance.

"If you keep putting in the performances it is just a matter of time before the result comes, and it did tonight.

"I was interested to see how it [the striking partnership] worked. They are both talented players.

"I would not like to be a centre-half playing up against two players like that. They are so mobile, clever and have good movement. I saw some good potential there.

"I think everyone is starting to see the players we have brought in. We have got a few injuries hanging over us, so it is important to have good depth in the squad."

Reading could easily have had more than just the one goal at the break, with Baldock and McNulty failing to make the most of promising possession.

Mo Barrow continously threatened down the left wing before he limped off with an injury in the 26th minute and was replaced by Pelle Clement.

Royals' boss later confirmed Barrow felt a tightness in the groin and will need further assessment ahead of Saturday's home league clash against Bolton.

Aluko sidelined

Sone Aluko has also been ruled out of this weekend's fixture.

The 29-year-old travelled with the squad to Nottingham Forest but did not feature after a scan revealed a slight tear to his groin.

Meite's chances of facing the Trotters are also in doubt after he was forced off in the 82nd minute with a rib problem.

Reading Chronicle:

Yakou Meite celebrates his quality strike against the Blues in the Carabao Cup.

However, it appears the 22-year-old Frenchman has already made a big impression on Clement since returning to Reading after spending last season on loan with Ligue 2 outfit Sochaux.

"I liked him as soon as I saw him," Clement added. "I like his personality, his desire, his physicality, his ability to listen and want to learn and improve.

"He took the goal with his weaker foot and he has got a cracking left-foot shot on him.

"He is still a young player with lots to improve on, but an exciting prospect."

Clement now hopes the success in the Carabao Cup will transfer into points in the Championship, with Reading currently sitting bottom of the table.

He added: "We have got to bit of momentum going. If we are going to be successful this year it will be down to our togetherness, our unity and players stepping up when it is their chance.

"I thought we had some other good opportunities against Birmingham. I thought at half-time we should have been further ahead, had we been more clinical, more ruthless.

"I thought both goals were fantastic for different reasons.

"We have got to put in another good performance at the weekend and get points on the board. We have a great opportunity to do that. We are at home again and I think the support of our fans has been great.

"I think the fans can start to see the identity of the team and I get the impression that they quite like it.

"I don't want us to be a team that plays long balls up to the front and knock it down."

As well as promising attacking displays, Sam Walker was able to make a telling contribution on his debut by keeping a clean sheet.

The former Brighton player had a largely easy fixture, but was called upon in the final 10 minutes to make two big saves to deny Che Adams and Beryly Lubala.

"Sam made a couple of great saves," declared Clement. "When he was called upon he was there. The work rate of the players both attacking and defending was excellent.

"I think we have got a strong goalkeeping department.

"Sam and Vito [Mannone] have got to be pushing and working hard every day. It is a good healthy situation to have."