Pulis sticks with recipe for Stoke disaster

Posted by James Whittaker

It was another unsurprising defeat on the road for Stoke as they lost 1-0 to Fulham in a game that had all the ingredients necessary for an away day disappointment.


  • 3 Players out of position
  • 1 Static target man
  • 2 Favourites
  • 2 Pace on the bench
  • Plenty of long ball
Will Frustrate - Approx. 700 fans

Cooking Time - 94 minutes

Preparation method

Line up all ingredients, now remember that the last 23 times you have tried to cook this dish, it has failed miserably on all but one occasion and that was using the dependable cooker down at the Hawthorns, which never fails.

Throw everything into the bowl apart from 'pace on the bench'. You'll notice that the target man you've selected isn't mixing with all the other ingredients (again) and those 'players out of position' aren't helping at all, not to worry, keep stirring furiously, regardless. Other cooks wouldn't use that particular constituent, especially in this old fashioned oven, but seeing as you keep insisting on doing so I guess we'll have to see how we get on.

- Mison: Solid show sinks Stoke
- Tactics Board: Travelling Stoke revert to type

Hang on, you've put too much 'long ball' in now and it's all gone a funny colour, I think we're going to have to rescue this with one or two helpings of 'pace on the bench' before it gets much worse... you want to keep trying? Ok. I still can't taste that favourite herb of yours, it's not coming through at all, it rarely does, why not put just one of the 'pace on the bench' in, do you remember when we managed to save those seemingly ruined dishes with them? They completely transformed the flavour of the dish and everything worked out ok despite it getting burned early?

There's not much time left now and there's a crust at the bottom of the bowl that could ruin this, are you absolutely sure you want to leave 'pace on the bench' out of this? Yes, I think we should put some in too, let's sift out this sour 'static target man' and get them in there. That's better, can you see how the mixture is starting to come together now, you can tell by how the corners are starting to take shape. That said, it's still not quite where we want it to be but hang one, we've got a great chance to save it now, let's not mess this up... STOP, why are you putting more of your 'favourites' herb in there? You know what, I think this is gone, let's try and remove some of the 'long ball' and stir it a bit more creatively and see if that helps... that's it nice and smooth... ok, stop you're bashing at it again now, did you put more 'long ball' in when I turned my back?

Time's up, show me what you've got…

You've done it again Tony! It was never going to work was it? It never does. You keep putting in the wrong ingredients at the start. Then you add too much 'long ball'. By the time you've realised it was doomed again it was too late for 'pace on the bench' to save it. As for that 'favourites' herb you insist on every time, please just trust the other ingredients and leave it out.

Oh well, onto the next kitchen, you will do it right next time won't you? What's that, you were just unlucky today? I won't hold my breath then.

Vis Unita Fortior

ESPN Conversations