29 May, 13:20
Jaap Stam has insisted Reading will maintain their confidence on the big stage ahead of their play-off game against Huddersfield Town at Wembley on Monday evening. Reading seek a passage to the Premier League and the biggest financial prize in football. According to Deloitte, promotion is worth a guaranteed £170m, a figure that could rise to £290m if the club retain their top-flight status.
Stam has previously dismissed the significance of his own big-game experience, saying there is only so much he can do from the touchline, and he believes his players have toughened from prevailing in important matches this season.
Reading won several tough matches in the Championship, including against Sheffield Wednesday and Leeds United, to finish third, and defeated an in-form Fulham on penalties to reach the playoff finals.
-I think they have learned throughout the season, they have made progress and we have had several games where we needed to do it and needed to win and they have done it, Stam said.
Stam has already committed to staying at Reading regardless of Monday's result but his opponent, Huddersfield manager David Wagner remains less certain about his future.
Should Huddersfield return to the top flight for the first time since 1972, Dean Hoyle, the club’s owner, is prepared to offer Wagner a radically improved, £2.5m-a-year contract but could still face a fight to retain him.