Paul McShane spoke of his desire to get the club 'back where it belongs' after signing a contract extension in midweek.
The Royals' captain signed for an extra year after his current deal, taking his stay with the club until at least 2019.
Having come so close to promotion back to the Premier League last term, going one better this time around is the only thing on Macca's mind.
Speaking about his contract extension and shifting expectations, he said: “It’s very good. I’m happy to sign on again and extend my contract, I’ve enjoyed my time here. It’s been hard work, I just want to continue it and get the club back to where it belongs.
“I think in the last year or so we’ve done really well. You can sense the shift in mentality in the club now, we’re looking to go that step further and get to the Premier League.
“The manager’s been fantastic since he’s come in, he’s got us playing some good football and he has a winning mentality.
“He’s definitely putting that across to the players and the players are learning after every game and every training session. The players are improving all the time, and that’s towards one goal, which is promotion."
The skipper was full of praise for manager Jaap Stam for his approach to leading the team, and he hopes to see the squad learn from the experience of play-off heartache last season to galvanise another promotion push this season.
“I’m just glad he’s come to the club because it’s been a big learning experience from everyone. It’s just a joy to come in training and playing the games because you’re learning every single day, and it’s great to be a part of.
“It was very disappointing in the end but no-one would have predicted that we’d be in the play-off final last season. We have to learn from that experience and we have players that have played on that big stage.
“They can take that game as experience and only improve. We’ve set the bar very high now, and the next step is promotion whether it’s winning the play-off final in the top two. That’s got to be the aim, and let’s go for it."
Reflecting on an respectable first month of the season, McShane is hoping to see more consistency in our away form going forward.
As a player who is desperate for another good season with the Royals, the captain is aiming to iron out the creases and for the good times to outweigh the tough ones.
“There have been some really good performances but there have also been some really bad ones!" He quipped. "Our away form was poor, the QPR game was poor, Preston game was poor, I think we needed to sort that out and we nipped that in the bud pretty quickly.
“After that Preston game especially, it was really tough to take because of the manner that we lost that game, it hurts you deep down in your stomach when you lose a game like that.
“We put things right during the week and I think players were motivated to put that performance to bed and it’s important that we went to Birmingham away and we put in a good performance and won 2-0.
“We have to keep improving on that, and have that work rate, mentality and desire to win our games away from home. It’s a long season, there will be ups and downs but hopefully there will be more ups than downs."