TONY PULIS is urging Stoke City to show more of a ruthless streak . . . as they go in search of their second Barclays Premier League win of the season.
Pulis is adamant his side would have more reward for some promising performances if they had taken some of their chances in the opening ten games of the campaign; an argument backed up by events which led to their defeat at Norwich last weekend.
As City prepare for the meeting with Queens Park Rangers at the Britannia Stadium on Saturday, they will be looking to bounce back from the frustration and disappointment of the Carrow Road result when they squandered a number of good opportunities.
“We have got to become more ruthless in the final third of the pitch,” commented Pulis at his pre-match press conference ahead of the QPR match.
“We’ve had a good look at the statistics and they support the fact that our performances have been good in a lot of respects, apart from in the final third.
“If we’re going to win matches, then we’ve got to improve in that area because we should have scored more goals in our Premier League matches so far.
“We’ve looked solid at the back, we’ve looked good going forward and we’ve created chances. But as we saw at Norwich, we’re not making the most of them.”
Pulis is not unduly concerned about City’s current position in the Barclays Premier League table after a return of nine points from their first ten fixtures.
“We’ve talked a lot about the fact that we’ve had a particularly tough start to the season, but there are no easy matches at this level,” said City’s manager.
“Six of our first ten games have been away from home and, overall, I think we have played much better than we have done in the previous four seasons.
“We are unbeaten at home so far and we have played Manchester City and Arsenal in that time, so there is good reason for us to be positive in our outlook.
“It’s important people stay nice and calm. As I’ve said many times before, you have to be level headed at all times. That means you don’t get too carried away when things are going well, just as you don’t get too downhearted when they’re not so good.”
He added: “We have to make sure the players keep their confidence. They have trained really well this week and they’re clearly determined to get out there and put on a performance which will hopefully deliver the right result for us against Rangers.
“We need the supporters right behind us for what is another big game – as they all are at this level – but we also know we have to give them something to cheer about.”