Brian McDermott has played down reports he is to be replaced as Reading boss by Dick Advocaat.
The Royals lie 18th in the Barclays Premier League and have not yet won a game this season. Reports in the Dutch press over the last week have linked PSV Eindhoven coach Advocaat to McDermott's job, with Russian owner Anton Zingarevich reportedly interested in talking to the former Holland boss.
When asked if he was aware of the rumours, McDermott said: "(He is a) decent manager - I haven't actually (read anything). It is pretty sad to have conversations like this really I think - you have a bunch of people here absolutely trying their best to the nth degree at the club."
Advocaat's managerial record will be well known to Zingarevich as the 65-year-old has previously been in charge of Zenit St Petersburg and the Russia national side. But McDermott did not want to comment on the speculation and was more concerned with preparing his side for Sunday's visit of Everton.
He said: "We have got six draws, which could have been different, and great staff. Stories like that are stories - that is all they are. It is completely out of my control and is nothing to do with football, nothing to do with what we have to do on Saturday. It is nothing to do with it - that is the only thing that I would want to talk about."
The 51-year-old McDermott again distanced the club from a January transfer window binge. Zingarevich is reportedly keen on bringing in a host of big-name signings in the new year to help keep the club in the top flight, but McDermott still does not see that happening.
"It came across that we were going to sign 10 players but that isn't the case," the Royals boss said. "He (Zingarevich) said we were just looking at 10 different types of players. Ten different players coming in is not true and it is never going to happen - we haven't got a budget to sign 10 players."
One man McDermott is hoping will still be a Reading player beyond the end of the season is defender Alex Pearce. The 24-year-old Republic of Ireland international, who has not featured for the club since the 1-0 defeat at West Ham on September 22, has not yet penned a new deal at the Madejski Stadium.
McDermott reckons talks have been encouraging on an extension to Pearce's contract, despite links with clubs such as Liverpool.
"We had a good talk on Saturday. He wants to sign and I want him to sign," McDermott said. His agent needs to contact the club and they need to get together again. I don't want this to drag on for much longer."