Mark Bowen gave an optimistic assessment after Reading fell to a 1-0 defeat at Elland Road.

A second half goal from Pablo Hernandez gave Leeds all three points, taking them five points clear of third placed Fulham in the Championship table.

Bowen said after the game he felt his side were the better side in the first half, but lacked a little quality to make the breaks count.

"First and foremost I'm frustrated. We came with a game plan and certainly in the first half we worked really hard on it. I thought we were the better team in the first half in terms of the threat we posed.

"With a little bit more quality when we had those counter attacks in the final third, we would've created more chances. We've got to work on that.

"All the attributes that we did show today, coming to a place like this, I'm sure if we take that into the next two games with a little more quality in the forward areas, I'm confident we can come away with six points."

"I thought we deserved a point. The spirit is not affected by this result. We felt we should have come away with something."

Bowen slammed the performance of referee Jarred Gillett after the match, saying that Liam Moore had been punished for being 'too honest' after a late penalty appeal.

"We went to a 4-4-2 late on to try and create a defining moment and we thought we had with Liam Moore situation late on. I think he's been punished for being too honest, the fella is dragging him down and if he goes down, it's a penalty. 

"For years I've been saying it, you don't want an advantage - unless someone's clean through on goal. You take the free kick because you work on your free kicks.

"There was something wrong with the speaker on the referee's headset, so I said [to the fourth official] please tell the referee do not play advantages. 

"With five minutes to go, two possible free kicks from 30 yards out, he puts his hand out and waves play on. I don't know where that comes from."

Bowen left Baldock on the bench and used skipper Liam Moore as a makeshift centre forward in the closing minutes, a decision which he explained post match.

"I thought about it, but George Puscas is a goalscorer and I pushed Meite into the middle area.

"On another day you bring Sam on with 10-15 minutes to go - it's just the decisions you make in the heat of the battle."

With the fixtures coming up against a lot of sides in the bottom half of the table, the manager said that his side will be under a different sort of pressure.

"The expectancy will be put on us. We've only got two of the top ten teams in the remaining games. With that comes the pressure, people will think they're easy games. They're not, this league is tough and we all know that."

"But, let be honest, I would rather have that run in than having to play six of the top ten."