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Pulis: We've come a long way

Stoke boss Tony Pulis has hit back at criticism that the club has gone backwards this season.

Last Updated: 19/05/13 at 15:44 Post Comment

Tony Pulis: Look how far we've come

Tony Pulis: Look how far we've come

The Potters were dragged into a battle against relegation this season before a late rally saw them pull clear of the drop zone.

They face Southampton on the final day of the season with nothing at stake for either club, but Pulis has been stung by his critics who he says forget how much has been achieved since City reached the top flight.

"Six years ago this club was promoted. If we hadn't obtained Premier League football then we wouldn't have all of this," said Pulis, referring to the overall infrastructure these days at Stoke.

"Getting there and staying there has been the greatest achievement at this football club.

"It has given us the opportunity to build a club now unrecognisable in every way shape and form in respect of what I left and what I came back to.

"So we've a little bit of a legacy at this place that started when we walked back through the door seven years ago.

"I can remember us reporting at the stadium, getting changed in the dressing rooms and then coming down here (Clayton Woods training ground) and training, and there were four cars in the car park and a few dogs running around.

"You go down to the car park now and you've a thousand cars down there.

"It has changed and grown from top to bottom. The football club is a completely different organisation compared to what it was seven or eight years ago.

"I'm someone who is down to earth, and I understand there are a lot of people out there, no matter what you give them, they always want more.

"The expectations at this football club have gone through the roof over the past few years.

"There is a ceiling which you are sometimes going to hit and then drop down a little, and I understand that, but there are people out there who don't.

"But for the past six years we have had unprecedented success, and if you fall away or drop off, you are going to endure criticism.

"Premier League management is difficult. You are under the spotlight 10 to 20 times more than any other league in the country.

"So if things are not going right then you are going to be put under that spotlight, which you have to handle.

"If people are going to criticise you for what you have done, then fine, you have to accept that.

"But the majority of people accept what has been done at this club over the last seven years.

"If we could finish in the top 10 that would be absolutely wonderful for everybody at the club."

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