FA Cup: Reading boss Steve Clarke says league is still priority
Last updated on .From the section Reading
Reading boss Steve Clarke says the Championship is still his priority this season, despite his side's impressive run to the FA Cup quarter-finals.
The Royals beat Derby 2-1 on Saturday to reach the last eight, but Clarke insisted his focus was on making sure they avoid relegation.
"For the fans the FA Cup's been good in an overall disappointing season," he told BBC Radio Berkshire.
"But the league's the priority. We must get away from the bottom of the table."
Reading are currently 16th in the Championship, seven points clear of the bottom three.
Clarke added: "Seven points is too small a gap with 16 games to go and we have to make sure we keep picking up league points.
Analysis - BBC Radio Berkshire's Mick Gooding
"Reading have got a fantastic opportunity. It doesn't matter who they get in the draw, they've just got this confidence they can win. It's three away games, three wins.
"There's no reason Reading couldn't win the next game and get to Wembley. Steve Clarke's record in the FA Cup as a player and coach is superb."
"It's been a disappointing season, there's no point pretending otherwise, but for the the fans they've had three good away trips and we hope we get a good draw in the quarter-final."
Experienced striker Yakubu scored the winner against a Derby side reduced to 10 men after Stephen Warnock was sent off in the first half, his first goal since arriving in the January transfer window.
"It's good to get my first goal but the most important thing is we go through to the next round. We did really well, we fought as a team and it was a good win," said the former Everton and Middlesbrough striker.
|Yakubu on Reading fans singing "Feed the Yak and he will score..."|
|"I'm happy here and hopefully the fans can keep singing like that - it give us more confidence!"|
"As a striker you want to score goals, it gives you more confidence at a new club. I've been working hard for the last two weeks and I had the opportunity to come on and score the winner.
"In the league, the play-offs are gone I think but we don't want to get dragged in to a relegation battle.
"It's a a long way to Wembley still but if we can get a good draw, we'll take it from there."