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Managers' Thoughts on Stoke vs Swansea

Managers' Thoughts on Stoke vs Swansea

Tony Pulis and Michael Laudrup's thoughts ahead of Saturday's game at the Britannia Stadium.

Stoke City will be looking for their first win of the season following four draws and a defeat, while the Swans hope for a first win in four, after a draw and two losses.

Pulis sounds confident that a win will come if his side keep playing the way they are:

'If we keep playing the way we have been playing and work as hard as we have done, then I`m confident our fortunes will change,'

'In terms of starts to a season, this is certainly as well as we`ve played since we`ve been in the Premier League and I`m sure that the results will come.

'The important thing is that we`re trying to keep moving forward and we`ve put things in place to improve the football club. We`ve brought in some players this season who will help us to do that, but it takes time when you make those changes.

'I think our supporters can see what we are trying to do and they appreciate that it is the right way. We have known from the outset that this was going to be a tough start to the season, so there is a need for us all to be patient.'

Pulis also believes that their opponents have more strength in midfield this season, adding:

'Swansea did exceptionally well last season and they started this season well,'

'It is impressive what they have done over the last few years.

'I think they are physically more adept now because Michael Laudrup has brought in two players in the middle of the park who have given them more strength.'

Laudrup meanwhile says he respects Stoke City and their style of play:

"I respect Stoke for the way they play as much as I respect Barcelona for the way they play.

"We can all have the way we want to play but there are lots of ways to win games.

"I will never be the one to say 'I don`t like their style` because that is not me."

Laudrup is looking for his side to concede far fewer free kicks and to be quicker with the ball than they were in the 3-0 home defeat against Everton last weekend.

"They have a very physical team and set pieces are a very big part of football these days,"

"Stoke rely on their set-pieces and we certainly can`t give eight or nine free kicks away in the first 10 minutes again.

"Everybody knows about their direct style of play and of course, they scored from two set pieces last season.

"But some times it`s impossible to avoid set pieces. You can talk about free kicks but we still want to be aggressive in our pressure, it`s more about the way we defend.

"There`s still only one ball so if we play it around they can`t hurt us.

"We have to pay attention and not give them free headers, and when we have the ball we have to make sure that we use it.

"You have to take chances, but they will be calculated in whatever we do."

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

Date:Friday September 28 2012
Time: 10:01PM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Man City 9 6 2 1 20 11
2 Arsenal 9 6 2 1 20 10
3 Liverpool 9 6 2 1 20 9
4 Chelsea 9 6 1 2 19 10
5 Spurs 9 5 4 0 19 9
6 Everton 9 4 3 2 15 5
7 Man Utd 9 4 2 3 14 1
8 Southampton 9 3 4 2 13 3
9 Watford 9 3 3 3 12 0
10 AFC Bournemouth 9 3 3 3 12 0
11 Crystal Palace 9 3 2 4 11 0
12 Leicester City 9 3 2 4 11 -4
13 WBA 9 2 4 3 10 0
14 Burnley 9 3 1 5 10 -5
15 West Ham 9 3 1 5 10 -7
16 Stoke 9 2 3 4 9 -7
17 Middlesbrough 9 1 4 4 7 -4
18 Hull City 9 2 1 6 7 -14
19 Swansea 9 1 2 6 5 -7
20 Sunderland 9 0 2 7 2 -10
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