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Fans would never let us play the Swansea way, says Tony Pulis

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: February 27, 2012

Tony Pulis

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TONY Pulis admitted he could not ask Stoke City to play the Swansea way after victory at the Britannia yesterday — because Potters fans would not put up with it.

Stoke got revenge for their 2-0 defeat at the Liberty last October thanks to first-half goals from Matthew Upson and Peter Crouch.

Swansea City enjoyed spells where they controlled yesterday's game, but their passing approach — deemed 'boring' by some of the natives — did not bring any reward on the scoreboard and they were undone by two trademark Stoke set-pieces.

But despite seeing his side's less eye-catching approach win the day, Pulis paid tribute to Swansea.

"I have to say first of all that the way Swansea play is a credit to Brendan (Rodgers) and his coaching staff," said the Stoke manager. "They are very, very hard to play against because they keep the ball everywhere. They are patient — they go backwards and they go sideways. I am not sure our crowd would let us play like that — they like it up and at 'em here.

"But Swansea do very well on the ball and they are very good on the eye."

Whenever possible Stoke, who showed 11 changes from the side who were beaten in Valencia last Thursday, tried to upset Swansea by pressing them high up the pitch. The tactic worked at times, the visitors struggling to create chances because they could not get out of their own third.

"We had to make sure we worked our socks off and I thought the effort from our lads was first class," Pulis added.

"We could have sat off and waited for them to come. They are very patient with the ball and they frustrate teams who end up losing their discipline, so we had to make sure that didn't happen."

Pulis paid tribute to Upson, who produced a man-of-the-match performance in central defence in the absence of the suspended Robert Huth.

The Newport-born former Plymouth manager was criticised by some sections of the Stoke support after fielding a reserve team in the glamour Europa League tie in Spain.

But he stressed the need to ensure his team took another step towards securing their top-flight status for another year by seeing off Swansea.

"It's very important for us to get the points on the board as quickly as we can," he added.

"It's a tough league. As soon as you take your foot off the pedal and think you have a right to be in it, you will be in trouble.

"If that's how you are thinking, it's the time to pack it in and get out."

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  • UAEJACK  |  March 03 2012, 4:03AM

    Well, Well, well, how wrong can you be. I've been a Swans supporter since before Mr. Philosoraptor was born and I am entitled to my opinion. This "Chuckle Brothers" style of football we seem to have adopted, drives me mad. You could go to Tesco during the game, do the weekly shop, come back and nothing will have changed. This surely is not entertainment? How can we have 73% possession in a game and still Lose? Are you not seeing this? No-one wants to see the Swans win more than me, but not like this. Scott Sinclair should be benched, he is contributing nothing. Danny Graham can take the penalties!!!!

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  • trncjack  |  February 28 2012, 2:52PM

    Swans style is, in my humble opinian , great to watch, all we need in the team is someone who can take that style a little further, meaning playing the ball forward more,I think a lot of teams have done their home work on us ,and now we have to really dig deep. The players maybe think that they have arrived and do not need to scrap every inch,We have now got to take the points of the teams below us to stay up, but we can do it

  • Philosoraptor  |  February 28 2012, 10:03AM

    UAEJACK... you know nothing about football. This so called "boring" football is the reason Swansea is where it is in the football pyramid. Nobody here believes you are a Swansea fan, we all know you are a Cardiff fan in disguise. Unlucky on Sunday, LIVERPOOL!!! haha

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  • UAEJACK  |  February 28 2012, 8:26AM

    I totally agree with Tony Pulis, this style of play we have is aweful to watch. Brendan, should try watching some of the big teams play and see the all out attacking, surely it's more entertainig for the supporters?

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