TP more likely to jump than be pushed

Date published: Wednesday 13th March 2013 10:37

Paul Hart: Returns to role with Leeds Academy

In the last blog, I wrote that Tony Pulis was still the man for the majority of Stoke City fans.

Sure, we were in the middle of a bit of wobble – and since then, Stoke have lost three more matches, including a home defeat to West Ham United.

There is no denying that Stoke are in pretty rotten form – and have been for all of 2013. In fact, if the Premier League had started on New Year’s Day, Stoke would be bottom with four points, and just six goals scored.

The worrying sign is there doesn’t seem to be anything being done to change the results – particularly away from home.

The Potters have always had rotten away form since promotion nearly five years ago – but recently, with poor performances at Swansea, Fulham and Newcastle, the approach has been the same every time.

At the same time, Stoke still occupy 11th place – level on points with 10th.

Despite the very poor form, being dragged into the relegation battle is unlikely, albeit not impossible. A 10th place finish would be our best ever finish in the Premier League and, by that token, a good season.

But there are growing concerns regarding Pulis. The tactics seem wrong, the away performances are terrible and, as shown at Arsenal, it can be dangerous to get sucked into sticking with a manager through nothing but royalty.

There are many suggesting that it might time for him to leave. Not before the end of season, but in the summer.

I personally can’t see Peter Coates sacking Tony Pulis, but I could see them having a good chat, and Pulis offering up his resignation.

The Welshman is proud to the point of stubbornness, and if he felt he was no longer doing the best he possibly could, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him leave.

I’d feel sorry for Pulis if, after all he’s done for the club, he was fired. But if he left, then he’d get many fans best wishes and hearty thanks.

Stoke City would prove to be very good proposition for a manager; we have no debts, a chairman who isn’t afraid to spend cash, a decent squad, a brilliant fan base and an intimidating, and soon to be bigger, stadium.

The components are all there for an ambitious manager to maybe take Stoke to the next level – should Pulis decide he has done all he can.

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