PHIL Parkinson hopes Wanderers can benefit from Reading’s extended play-off hangover.

Jaap Stam’s Royals have endured a dreadful campaign after losing on penalties in last season’s Wembley showpiece to Huddersfield Town.

Now rumours are rife that the Dutchman could lose his job if Reading do not pull clear of trouble soon.

Parkinson believes his former club have struggled to overcome last season’s disappointment.

“Last year they probably over-achieved getting to the play-off final, penalty kicks away from the Premier League,” he said.

“There is always a fall-out from losing that game. I experienced it myself as a player.

“Expectations go that little bit higher whereas last season it was looked as a bonus doing what they did.

“Also, I think the way they played, teams have had a year to look at them and can now set themselves up differently.

Bolton can move above tomorrow night’s hosts with victory at the Madejski Stadium.

Only Fulham have had more possession than Reading this season – but the same style which proved so successful 12 months ago has not produced the same results this time around.

“They have continued to do what brought them success last year and you can understand that because they have signed players who can do it,” Parkinson said.

“Whether they change something tomorrow night, who knows? They haven’t had a game at the weekend, so that will help.”

Parkinson watched on from the sidelines in 1995 as Bruce Rioch’s Wanderers beat Reading 4-3 in a famous play-off final at Wembley.

He then suffered another defeat in the final six years later against Walsall, and admits the disappointment was hard to shift.

“It is difficult to shed that mentality,” he said. “I looked at Sheffield Wednesday, two years in the play-offs, and it is tough for the same manager and the same players to go again.

“You try to avoid it but it can be hard to get going again.”

Both Reading and Bolton start the game four points clear of the bottom three.

“Reading are looking over their shoulder, I don’t think it’s a secret,” Parkinson said.

“They maybe expected a downturn but not to the extent it has happened.

“We have to exploit that and create an edginess in the ground tomorrow.”