CHRIS Gunter is convinced Reading FC can still snatch an automatic promotion place in the Championship.

Gunter, one of Royals’ players of the season so far, believes Nigel Adkins’ men are still in the race for a top-two finish and an immediate return to the Premier League.

Reading demolished Bolton Wanderers 7-1 at home last weekend to chalk up the club’s biggest win in 34 years.

It also moved Royals back into the play-off positions with a trip to out-of-form Ipswich Town to come this Saturday (3pm ko) followed by a home clash with managerless Blackpool next Tuesday night (8pm ko).

And Gunter believes that if Reading can hit a rich vein of form from here on in - as they did under Brian McDermott in 2012 when they won the Championship

title - anything is possible.

Speaking exclusively to the Chronicle, he said: “People know what this club has managed in the past when they have gone on late runs. We all know what happened a couple of years ago.

“Christmas was so busy for us you don’t really look at tables or anything like that because you are always preparing for games.

“We’ve always said it’s important to be in and around the play-offs because you never know what’s going to happen.

“When we lose game it’s important not to get too upset and the opposite applies when we win, even if it’s by a massive score like last weekend.

“It doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy for us and we will win the next game at Ipswich. We need to keep our feet on the ground.”

“The fact is the Bolton win will mean nothing if we don’t win at Ipswich on Saturday.”

Royals are 11 points adrift of second-placed QPR and still have to go to Loftus Road next month for a promotion six-pointer.

Wales international Gunter, 24, added: “There are 20 games left so anything can happen.

“Potentially you could go the rest of the season without winning another game, or you could win them all.

“After one result we’re not going to say we’re going to win the league or anything like that.

“The main thing is we look at what got us the result against Bolton and make sure we do the same every week.”