DAVE KEMP has admitted that the challenge of trying to prepare for an important Barclays Premier League match this weekend while also dealing with the countdown to the transfer deadline has proved to be a major headache.
Stoke City’s assistant manager questioned the timing of one of the busiest days of transfer activity in the football calendar which falls late on Friday evening, just hours before the Potters travel to the DW Stadium to face in-form Wigan Athletic.
Kemp stepped in to take the Club’s Thursday morning media conference ahead of the Wigan game while Tony Pulis dealt with transfer matters.
“It’s a strange situation because we are trying to be in two places at one time,” he commented in looking ahead to the visit to the DW Stadium.
“We have to focus on a big game, but there is obviously a lot of work being done behind the scenes in the countdown to the transfer deadline.
“It’s all crammed in to the next couple of days, then we have an international break when things go pretty quiet, so the timing is not good at all.
“You are being pulled in all sorts of directions because we hope to conclude one or two transfer deals, but we also have to focus on the game.
“That is why I am sat here now. The transfers, the game; it’s a high pressure situation and we’re trying to devote our attention to both matters.”
Kemp knows that City will face a difficult test at the DW Stadium as they endeavour to bounce back from the disappointing Capital One Cup exit.
“Wigan are one of the form teams in the Premier League over the past 10 or 12 matches,” said City’s number two in focussing on Saturday’s game.
“Roberto Martinez has put a system in place and his players now understand it which is why they have put together an impressive run of results.
“We don’t have the best of records against them since our promotion to the Premier League, but it’s hard to put your finger on why that is the case.
“They are an awkward team to play against, but it’s our job to come up with something that makes it difficult for them to play against Stoke.”