Stoke City is a premier league football team which reeks of being an average Championship side, don't get me wrong I appreciate that they are mighty tough opposition for anyone but when I say that they reek of being an average Championship side I mean that their style, their mentality of using their muscles and height instead of a genuine footballing ability reeks of being an average Championship side, and once again, I understand that they are using their best abilities in order to gain results but surely after spending over 20 million pounds on strikers you should expect more than 26 goals in return? (That number of goals is Stoke's total for this season, not the total of goals scored by their strikeforce)
The mastermind behind Stoke City is a man in a track suit named Tony Pulis, this man successfully guided Stoke City to the top tier of English football in the 2007-2008 season, yes, he got them promoted and for that he deserves a lot of credit as the Championship is a tricky league to get out of but since that promotion Pulis has had a lot of money at his disposal, and despite that relatively large quantity of money at his disposal his signings have been average to say the least, Tuncay Sanli and Kanwyne Jones who cost around 13 million between sum up some of the typical signings football fans have grown to expect from Tony Pulis, it is well worth noting that Kanwyne Jones who cost 8 million pounds has scored 13 goals in over 70 appearances for Stoke.
Instead of investing in intelligent, good signings which focus on talented, young players who can really help Stoke City grow Pulis has remained stubborn to his long ball mentality and in order to achieve this he's signed players who have little to no actual technical ability and rely on being strong,tall and at times violent, players such as Nzonzi and Robert Huth are notable examples. And those sorts of signings and Pulis' mentality have hardly paid off in domestic terms either, since their promotion to the Premier League, Stoke's highest league finish has been 11thwhich was achieved in the 2009-2010 season, other finishes include last season's 14th. Stoke also reached the final of the FA Cup in the 2010-2011 season only to be defeated by Manchester City in the final, that defeat meant they qualified for European football, they got out of their group but were knocked out by a superior footballing side in the shape of Valencia.
And despite the dire football that Stoke insist on inflicting to their supporters and to the opposition, Tony Pulis is considered a managerial genius and one who deserves praise for the job he has done at Stoke, a job which has seen him spend significantly on average players who have simply not lived up to their over inflated price tags.Surely the money he has spent without really recuperating any money could and should have been destined towards players who could have changed Stoke's game and helped them to take a step further in the footballing world instead of signing players who will simply maintain them in mid-table whilst continuing with their long ball tendencies?In literal terms, since Stoke's promotion to the Premier League, Tony Pulis has spent around 75 million pounds on players such as Dave Kitson and in return achieved four mid to low table positions in the league and reached an FA Cup final, is that really worthy of all the praise he gets?