Reading returned to Championship action on Saturday afternoon with a frustrating 1-1 draw against Stoke City at the Madejski Stadium.

Lucas Joao opened the scoring early on for Mark Bowen's side, finishing well from inside the area in the 7th minute.

But Reading were denied all three points late on after Nick Powell reacted quickest to a knock-down from a corner, stooping to head beyond Rafael to give the visitors a share of the points. 

Speaking after the game, Mark Bowen expressed his frustration after his side failed to see the game out in second half injury time. 

“I thought we played well for long periods, we were rusty. We created god chances and our decision making at times could and should have been better.

“We’re playing a side like Stoke with big centre halves, I said to my players that’s when we have to be organised.

“Two or three of them stood by when the corner came in and are expecting either Moore or Morrison to head in. That lack of concentration has cost us which is really frustrating.”

An injury to Lucas Joao in the first half compounded Bowen’s frustrations.

“It's frustrating because he was our focal point, he got his goal. I spoke to him at half time and he said he didn’t feel anything pull or snap, but he felt it stiffen up really quicky.

"That’s a positive sign, but sometimes things seem okay and we wont know when it settles down in the next 48 hours and has a scan.

"Hopefully he can get back on the grass soon. We’ve got a squad of 29 which will stand us in good stead for the rest of the season.

"The injuries and recoveries, the big squads will have an advantage."

Bowen also lamented the referee's performance after he claimed that his side should have had two penalty kicks.

"We had some crowd noise which hopefully would have drowned out some of my expletives.

"The referee raised my blood pressure a few times, we had two penalties that weren’t given and numerous free kicks.

"I was exasperated by the whole performance by the referee. The game should have been beyond Stoke by then.

"I thought we had two stone wall penalties, I cant understand it. If we had a home crowd maybe we would have got something.

"It's frustrating, there were a few draws above us and we would have been in a position to jump into the top ten."