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Stam: “We need to enjoy the pressure”

17 March 2017

The gaffer wants the Royals to embrace the pressure to take a big three points at Hillsborough

Reading boss Jaap Stam says he wants his side to thrive on the pressure ahead of a big clash at Hillsborough against Sheffield Wednesday on Friday night.

The gaffer believes his side have what it takes to take three big points away from South Yorkshire and kick-on to end the season on a high.

“We need to enjoy the pressure,” said Stam. “It does not need to be a burden. As a footballer you want to play for success, you want to play as a team and as a club to get somewhere. We cannot let there be a pressure on our shoulders, you need to enjoy it.

“We gave ourselves the chance to be here and be fighting with the best teams in the Championship to go up to the Premier League. We need to be proud of ourselves at what we have achieved already and we need to finish that off.

“Everybody needs to realise that we have put ourselves in this position by playing good football, by getting results and by working very hard.”

Stam knows Wednesday will pose a big test for the Royals on Friday, with both sides battling to consolidate their position inside the top six.

The manager, is however, confident his side can go and get a result if they are assured in themselves and play the same way that has seen them take so many results both at home and on the road this season.

“Sheffield Wednesday are in the same position that we are,” said the Dutchman. “It is a very important game for them as well. It is going to be a big game if you look at the game on its own, but even after the Wednesday game there are a lot of big games to be played.

“You need to go out there and enjoy it and play to your ability and if we do that I’m very confident that we will finish in the top six. We deserve to be up there, we need to stay up there but we still need to play quite a few games. We need to win our games to get up there and everybody is very eager to do that.

“They are a team that have been up there in the last few seasons,” Stam continued. “They want to go up and they have invested a lot of money to go up. They’ve got quality players that can be ruthless in what they do, we know that and we need to make sure we do that as well.

“We’ve looked at when we can take advantage of their system when we play, and it’s up to the players to go and enjoy it. The players need to be confident in the way they play, be confident in each other and be confident in themselves and what they do. If they can do that then I’ve got a good feeling about Friday.”

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