Vital Football

Latest Stoke City News

Stoke: Coates takes it one step at a time

Stoke: Coates takes it one step at a time

Stoke City chairman, Peter Coates has endeared himself to supporters since regaining control of the club three years ago but is certainly not ready to aim too high.

A lot of water has gone under the bridge since Peter Coates relinquished control of the club back in 1997 when he sold out to the Icelandic consortium amid unpleasant scenes both on and off the pitch. In the intervening nine years he remained as a director but was able to spend time building up the internet gambling site, Bet365.

It's now a multi-million business and earned the life-long Stoke fan one more chance of seeing his club finally getting back into the top flight of English football. When he decided to buy back the club in 2006, he only just saved it from possible financial catastrophe and instantly injected several million pounds just to pay off the club's mounting debts.

You certainly cannot accuse Peter Coates of 'doing a Mike Ashley' and pandering to the noiser sections of Stoke fans when his first decision as chairman was to bring back Tony Pulis as manager to less than rapturous applause. But that decision was a master stroke, even if it took us fans a season or two longer to realise it.

We're now into our fourth summer of the Coates and Pulis regime and each season he's given the manager the freedom to do what he thought necessary and supplied the funds to enable him to do his job. Back in 2006, there was talk of achieving promotion 'in three years', yet we managed that in just two. Last season it was all about survival. Fans may have been divided about the style, but we know only one thing really mattered - just staying in the Premier League and we managed that with room to spare.

So what for 2009/10 season? Those so-called pundits will certainly try and do us down again with talk of 'second season syndrome', but the target has to be the same as last - just avoid the drop. Coates has already made it clear that he will back the manager and that cash is available as and when Pulis wants to spend. Will all know that many of last season's targets didn't fancy a relegation scrap and opted for 'better' chances at clubs like West Brom and Middlesbrough. This time around, it will still be tough to get the right players in as the manager raises the bar even higher in an attempt to help the club push onwards and upwards.

In the meantime, Peter is doing what most club chairmen should be doing, keeping in the background and letting those who he pays to do the job, do the job. He's certainly not one to heap too much pressure on the manager and told the media this week that 'if we finished a couple of places lower, we wouldn't be too disappointed. It's a tough division and we need to stay up because we need to build.'

That's one lesson that Mike Ashley, up on Tyneside, has had to learn the hard and very expensive way.

Win FREE pizza with Vital Football!
Select your team and get 50% off if they score twice.
www.papajohns.co.uk/football



For the very latest Premier League odds

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Chris Baldwin
Date:Monday June 22 2009
Time: 9:54PM

Best of Vital Network

Login to post a comment

Recent Stoke City Articles

When Does 2016/17 Start For Stoke (23/5/16)

With the curtain fully drawn on the 2015/16 season and only the Championship Play Off Final to go to complete next year's top flight teams, here's when the new season...

Possible League Changes For Stoke?

The Football League have confirmed that member clubs have received a 'discussion document' that details proposed major changes to the make up of the game in this country.

A New Season - New Rules For Stoke

With the curtain almost drawn on the 2015/16 campaign, with a handful of Play Off games to go and most looking towards the European Championships in France...

Stoke Looking At Substitute Numbers?

With changes to the rules of the game already confirmed, it's being reported Stoke City are one of the Premier League clubs looking at increasing substitute numbers for match days.

Archived Vital Stoke Articles

Vital Stoke articles from

Site Journalists

Lloyd Reddin
Editor email
Profile
Tom Barker
no email
Profile
Matthew Forrester
no email
Profile
Phil Williams
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

MOTM v West Ham
Suggested By:
Given5%
Cameron0%
Shawcross33%
Wollscheid0%
Pieters0%
Whelan2%
Imbula50%
Walters0%
Bojan4%
Arnautovic0%
Joselu0%
Diouf1%
Bardsley1%
Adam4%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Leicester City 38 23 12 3 81 32
2 Arsenal 38 20 11 7 71 29
3 Spurs 38 19 13 6 70 34
4 Man City 38 19 9 10 66 30
5 Man Utd 38 19 9 10 66 14
6 Southampton 38 18 9 11 63 18
7 West Ham 38 16 14 8 62 14
8 Liverpool 38 16 12 10 60 13
9 Stoke 38 14 9 15 51 -14
10 Chelsea 38 12 14 12 50 6
11 Everton 38 11 14 13 47 4
12 Swansea 38 12 11 15 47 -10
13 Watford 38 12 9 17 45 -10
14 WBA 38 10 13 15 43 -14
15 Crystal Palace 38 11 9 18 42 -12
16 AFC Bournemouth 38 11 9 18 42 -22
17 Sunderland 38 9 12 17 39 -14
R Newcastle 38 9 10 19 37 -21
R Norwich 38 9 7 22 34 -28
R Aston Villa 38 3 8 27 17 -49
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Stoke City Results (view all)

Stoke City Fixtures (view all)