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Thursday, 11 April 2013

Stoke City: Should the Potters keep faith with Pulis?


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Tony Pulis is coming under increasing pressure at the Britannia Stadium and some critics believe his time as Stoke City boss is over.

The Potters have picked up a paltry five points from a possible 39, failed to score in eight of their past 13 outings and are sit just three points above the drop zone. The fans are becoming frustrated with the club's brand of football and Pulis's pig-headedness in always choosing his favourites and are seriously worried about losing their top flight status.

Stoke City have a tough run-in, starting this weekend at home to the leaders Manchester United - a team they haven't beaten in the league since 1984. They then face QPR at Loftus Road before hosting Norwich City, who aren't totally safe themselves yet. They then have a huge six-pointer against Paolo Di Canio's Sunderland at the Stadium of Light and host Champions League hopefuls Spurs before ending the season away at high-flying Southampton.

So with only six games left to go, should Stoke City keep faith with Tony Pulis?

Here is what our Squarefootball reporters, readers and fans on Google+ think.

Squarefootball's Liverpool reporter Dave Disciascio

"If they want to avoid a circus in the Press they certainly should avoid hiring any controversial Italians!

"But a panic change of manager during the run-in is always has its dangers; it could fire the club to safety or condemn them to relegation. Perhaps a change in the summer would be wise. And perhaps still, if a certain Harry Redknapp is averse to managing in the Championship he might be available … but that would not prevent a circus in the Press either."

Squarefootball writer and West Ham fan Mitch Waddon

"Stoke should definitely keep faith with Tony Pulis. The man has done so much for Stoke City and this is the first time since the Potters’ promotion that they’ve looked in danger of relegation. It would send out a very poor message if the Coates family got rid of the man that got them to the Premier League at the first sign of trouble. Don’t forget that Pulis took Stoke to an FA Cup final and an eighth place finish only two years back. Pulis deserves to stay at Stoke."

Stoke City fan Phil Eccleston doesn't believe Pulis will be in the dugout for much longer.

"Pulis will go upstairs I think. It is his stubbornness that has found him out of favour with the fans. Wigan for me to go down."

Sunderland fan Tony Ratton, who has just witnessed a change of manager at the Stadium of Light, believes Pulis should stay.

"Yes Stoke should keep faith in Ton Pulis. He knows the players and its too late in the season with six games to go the get rid of him."

West Brom supporter Andy Wakeman

"Stoke play a system honed by Pulis and a new manager would have limited options as the players have been bought to play the Pulis way.  It has to be said though that a team who play like Stoke will have a limited shelf life in the Premier League as class will usually win through in the end. Personally I think they are an affront to football and do hope that they go down."

Bolton Wanderers fan Dave Blackburn

"He has been there a while and some managers would have had the bullet by now - his signings just haven't hit it off. Maybe the time to assess will be at the end of the season rather than now as I don't think they will go down. I would give him until the end of the season and take it from there, but I am afraid his days could be numbered and he won't be there much longer."

Jonathan J Sheppard took to Google+ to say he hopes Stoke go down whatever happens to Pulis.

"They are my tip to go down given position and form, and good riddance. I hate their brand of anti-football."

While Peter Johnstone replied sticking up for Stoke and that he thinks the Potters will survive.

"I still back Sunderland to join Reading and QPR. I quite like Stoke to be honest - they've adopted their own, legitimate, brand of football which has, until this season at least, seen them to solid mid-table finishes since they came up. It may not be as attractive to watch, but it's still got them the points."

Squarefootball writer Hugh Larkin 

"Stoke should stick with Tony Pulis. This is the first dodgy patch he's had and its too late to panic and bring in a new man. He deserves a chance to turn it around and one win would change the mood completely."

Well that's what our selection of football fans think, but what do you think the Potters should do with Pulis? Whatever your view, we'd love to hear from you.

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Colin Illingworth

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