YAKOU Meite thanked the Chinese owners of Reading FC for showing faith in him after his match-winner against Wigan Athletic.

Meite grabbed a superb 97th minute winner on Saturday to complete an incredible comeback by Royals and secure back-to-back Championship victories for the first time this season.

The vital result sent Jose Gomes’ men above Wigan to 19th in the table – they highest position they have occupied since October – ahead of tomorrow’s home clash against second-placed Leeds United (8pm ko).

It also highlighted a dramatic turnaround in the career of 23-year-old Meite, who signed a new four-year contract in October, but looked set to leave in January until co-owner Dai Yongge intervened.

Speaking exclusively to the Reading Chronicle, Meite said: “After I scored I saw the manager and he said ‘Thank you Mr Dai’ because I was ready to go in the transfer window.

“The owner told me to stay so the manager said thank you to him. It feels worth it now, maybe he will send me a text from China. It was a good feeling.

“In football, people don’t always agree. I’m just trying to do my best on the pitch and show people who aren’t happy with me that I can do the job.

“I know I’m not the most technical player, but I will do my best all of the time on the pitch. I think my mentality is my first quality and I try to show it every time.”

Reading Chronicle:

Reading boss Jose Gomes signals the number 'two' after Reading secure back-to-back victories.

Royals trailed 2-1 in the 89th minute in the weekend’s relegation six-pointer when Mo Barrow’s controversial 25-yard strike flew into the bottom corner to make it 2-2.

Nick Powell’s 20th minute opener for the visitors had been cancelled out by John Swift’s sensational free kick moments before the interval.

Joe Garner regained the lead for Wigan on 64 minutes, but Barrow and Meite both netted at the death to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.

It was Meite’s eighth goal of the campaign, but first in 14 matches since a brace against basement boys Ipswich Town in a 2-2 home draw on November 10.

“It was a very good celebration for us,” he explained. “I won’t score important goals like that at the end all of the time, so it will stay in my mind. It’s the first time I score a late winner like this, so you have to enjoy these things.

“Every time I’m on the pitch I try and do my best as a striker. I hadn’t scored for a while and we have some important games to come so hopefully this will give me confidence.

Reading Chronicle:

John Swift scored directly from a free-kick on Saturday.

“When it went 2-1 to Wigan everybody was upset, but we kept fighting and won at the end. It shows the spirit of the team. We don’t want to lose at home.

“I want to say thank you to the fans who give us a lot of power to win the game. That celebration was for everyone at the club.”

Meite, Barrow and their partners were planning on a quiet celebration after the match as the players were due back in training yesterday ahead of the Leeds clash.

“We need to switch back on quickly,” Meite added. “It will be a tough, tough game. We need to recover quickly and be prepared.”