Circling back a day, U.S. international has re-established himself in Reading’s starting lineup and played a big role as his team picked up three big road points in the Championship league’s Friday night feature match.
Williams went all 90 in his central midfield role as the Royals downed Nottingham Forest, 3-2. Williams, having gone in and out of the lineup this year while trying to get completely healthy, got the start after coming on at halftime last week.
Here is what The Tilehurst End said about Williams (while rating his performance an “8” on the standard 1-10 scale.)
It was clear to see from Friday’s game that Williams is one of the players we’ve been desperately missing in our injury riddled squad. He certainly talked the talk during the week, but he proved what he could do when it mattered. He was quick and creative, and I’m excited to see him when he’s got more match practice and fitness to his name.”
Reading is 5th in the 24-team Championship. Still a long, long way to go in one of the truly brutal gauntlets of league soccer, but the club is positioned reasonably going into December.
Williams’ emergence as a healthy contributor at Reading could be useful for the United States. If healthy, Williams is probably battling with Kyle Beckerman as primary backup to Jermaine Jones at holding midfielder.
And if you know Jones, you know two things: he does have some tendency to injury, already on the high side of 30. And he’s a yellow card or red card waiting to happen. Either way, chances that Jones would make it through four matches next summer in Brazil (assuming the United States plays that many) might be something like 50-50.