Writer: Charlie Bennett
Date:Tuesday December 29 2009
Stoke boss Tony Pulis last night confirmed that the club are in the market for a couple of new signings as they try desperately to rekindle some form. The Potters poor run of 1 win in 9 games has seen them drop further down the table and are now only 4 points off the bottom 3.
Speaking after last night`s 1-0 defeat at home to Birmingham, Pulis said "We need a bit more quality in front of goal. We've lost our touch". That statement is undeniable; the Potters have managed just 15 goals all season, the lowest in the league.
"We've been looking for someone to control the midfield for us for a long time. Those players are difficult to get hold of, but we are looking.' This morning West Ham midfielder Scott Parker has been linked with a record £9,000,000 move in January but the club has reiterated that despite their financial problems they will not be selling their best players.
The striker issue needs to be addressed, the future of both Dave Kitson and James Beattie still have question marks over them. Blackburn has shown interest in Beattie and Kitson`s apparent bust-up with Peter Reid looks to have finally killed off his miserable time here.
Mama Sidibe`s contract is also up at the end of the season and although he is a firm fan favourite, his injury looks to have cost him a few extra grains of performance that were, at one time, valuable to the Potters attacking line.
Blackburn`s Jason Roberts and Benni McCarthy have been strongly linked with swap deals with Beattie, and although Roberts is a very similar player, McCarthy on the other hand is the natural finisher that maybe we are looking for.
The excitingly wild rumours of the potential arrivals of Ryan Babel, Kenwyne Jones and World Cup Winner Luca Toni are most likely to be way off the mark as the Potters pulling power or wage budget for that matter don`t stretch that far. We can dream though right?
Goalkeeper is a region that has been brewing up nicely since August. Steve Simonsen`s contract is up at the end of the season and his quest for first team football may be over at the club as they may decide to cash in now. Many replacements have been suggested such as highly rated 19 year-old Huddersfield player Alex Smithies and Preston`s Andy Lonergan. Even David James
Whatever happens it is sure to be an interesting window for the Potters as they bid to get there season back on track in the same fashion as last season, when both Beattie and Etherington inspired us to safety. Let`s just hope they get someone in…
Date:Tuesday December 29 2009
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