PREVIEW: Jaap Stam on Hull, injuries and transfers

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Pressure is beginning to heat up on Jaap Stam

Reading boss Jaap Stam insists confidence is not an issue despite his side’s poor run of form.

Now winless in seven following Saturday’s goalless FA Cup draw to Stevenage, Royals face a trip to Hull City in the Championship as they look to ease growing relegation fears.

Sitting just four points above the drop after a busy period of games, Stam is looking to make the most of the time available to spend with this squad.

“It’s good that we had a week like this with no midweek games,” he said.

Reading are winless in seven games

“We could work and talk about certain things to get everybody in the right direction again with the same thoughts because players are getting frustrated at times as well.

“There’s still a lot of games to go. As players, everybody is looking to win games and that one win can give you a boost, it gives you a different feeling.

“By winning a game, by having a good performance it lifts the morale of everybody and makes things a bit easier at times.

“That’s why it’s good for us to hopefully get a win on Saturday.”

Reading will be boosted by the return of Liam Moore at the weekend, with the defender shaking off a knock which ruled him out of the trip to Stevenage.

Players recovering from injury provides a selection headache, but this can lead to healthy competition according to the Royals boss.

“We’ve got a big squad now to make our choices from and that makes it difficult for myself to make those choices,” he said.

“But it’s good for the players to press for the same positions as well.

“It doesn’t make it easy for them, because they need to show to me who really wants it or who is the player in form basically to play.”

In terms of the transfer window, Stam again played down the chances of the club spending big amid talk of rival Championship sides forking out many millions on new recruits.

“We need to be creative,” he said.

“We cannot spend the same money as certain other teams are doing and what I’ve read in the papers.

“Again, like last season, we need to be creative in bringing certain players in.”

Reading will face an FA Cup replay against Stevenage at Madejski Stadium on Tuesday evening (8pm).

If they come through, they have been drawn to meet either Carlisle United or Sheffield Wednesday in round four, with the pair also due to replay after a 0-0 draw on Saturday.

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