"I would see them as a Premiership club even though they are outside it at the moment," he said.
"And given their position in the league, they are rehearsing for the Premiership now.
"Just look at the money they have spent since last summer. They have spent significant amounts of money mainly on strikers and they have serious intent. They want to play in the top flight and they have invested to do that."
Coppell takes his Reading side to St Andrews for the FA Cup 4th round clash.
Steve Bruce is in confident mood
"I am not saying we can win it, but we have got an oustanding chance of doing well," said Bruce.
"A few Premier League teams are already out, one of the big 'uns in Liverpool too - and we've also knocked another of the big 'uns out. It's a competition I take seriously and I'm going to pick my strongest available side.
"I can understand Premiership teams doing what they do in terms of changing the team and leaving players out. That's their decision.
"Steve Coppell even did it against us last season. But whatever team they put out, when they are confident and in a good mood, they are a tough nut to crack, as they showed."