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Friday, March 29, 2013
Pulis plays down talk of exit

Ian Edwards

Tony Pulis is adamant he still has the passion and the drive to manage Stoke City, amid suggestions he is considering his future at the Britannia Stadium.

Stoke's frustrating season has generated rumbles of discontent among a section of fans who believe Pulis has taken the club as far as he can in his five years as a Premier League boss.

With Stoke still not certain of a sixth successive season in the top flight and with just one away victory in their last 24 games, ahead of Saturday's difficult trip to face Everton, Pulis' commitment to the job has been placed under the microscope.

The situation has been fuelled by stories suggesting Pulis may even quit at the end of the season because of disagreements over the running of the club's academy and lack of funding for his first team squad. Any suggestions he has lost his edge and passion have been given short shrift by the boss though, who insists he still has the drive and desire to keep developing the club.

"It's a case of do you care and are you prepared to fight for it? Do you have sleepless nights for it and everything else that goes with it?" he said. "Nobody knows what managers go through and it's still happening with me. When it stops happening, then that will be the time to pack it in.

"You wake up some nights thinking about things you want to do and about things which need to be done. If there are things happening at the football club I don't think are right, I would fight my corner. If I was allowing things to get the better of me, then you lose it and you think that's the time.

"Your mind is non-stop, it keeps ticking and most managers are like it. Everybody who cares has those moments. It's non-stop even in the summer because you're still thinking about it."

Pulis wants his players to show the same defiance at Goodison Park and put an end to their miserable record on the road, with the club only four points off the relegation zone, but realistically he knows they will rely upon their home form to pick up the points required to avoid slipping back into the Championship.

He added: "We've got four big games at home and they are where we are looking to pick up points, but we will also go to Everton to be positive."




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