JAAP Stam has shrugged off suggestions his position at Reading FC was under threat after a poor start to the season.

Stam was rumoured to have been given a handful of games to turn Royals fortunes around after just three wins from their opening 13 league fixtures.

But the Dutchman was eager to brush the criticism aside after watching Royals sink Nottingham Forest 3-1 at Madejski Stadium on Tuesday night.

“It’s always like that with people putting pieces in the papers, that’s how it goes when you are in this job,” declared Stam.

“As a manager you need to deal with it. It always sells papers and creates a reaction which sells even more papers and gets more attention. I know how it works.

“But within the club we believe in what we’re doing going forward to eventually get another opportunity to maybe finish in the top six and have another shot at the Premier League.”

Reading Chronicle:

John Swift wheels away in celebration after scoring his second of the night against Nottingham Forest. Picture: Ian Morsman.

Reading remain 20th in the Championship table despite Tuesday’s impressive win against Forest where John Swift struck a brace followed by a Jordan Smith own goal.

It means Stam’s men are eight points off a play-off spot and with a game in hand.

However, Royals boss urged supporters not to expect a repeat of last season’s heroics when they defied the odds to finish third.

“It takes time,” he insisted. “Last season was nice but it wasn’t the intention to do it and it’s not even the intention now, though if it happens it will also be nice.

“We need to grow as a team and a club and eventually have the right structure so that if we go up we can stay up there.

“We don’t want to go up and then come straight back down next season because the structure isn’t good enough, that’s how we look at it.”

And Stam also stressed Reading will not be entertaining thoughts of a top-six finish and are looking no further ahead than a tough trip to fifth-placed Derby County this Saturday (3pm ko).

“We’re not thinking about it at all,” he added. “We had a good win on Tuesday but for us it’s about being consistent and getting results each game. Then we will have a look at it.”