Stoke have banned players from talking about former manager Tony Pulis after claims comments by striker Kenwyne Jones had sparked a dressing room rift.
The Trinidad and Tobago international described the ex-Potters' boss style as "sky football" and reports suggested other players were upset by that.
Coates has now moved to draw a line under the Pulis era by insisting the focus must be on the future and new boss Mark Hughes.
"We had seven very good years with Tony Pulis as manager and we are pleased with what he did for this football club," Coates told The Sentinel.
"We do not think it is right for journalists to ask individual players for their views on a previous manager, and would say the same about any manager but particularly one who spent a long time at the club and did very well.
"It is not fair on Tony to be rubbished, or for Mark Hughes to have the past talked about.
"We are not blaming Kenwyne, we are not criticising Kenwyne, nor the journalists either.
"We are just making clear what we want done in future, there is no issue with any journalists.
"What we want to do now is concentrate on winning football matches and pleasing our supporters."