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 Friday, 1 November, 2002, 08:42 GMT
Pulis gets Stoke job
Tony Pulis
Pulis stepped in after Burley rejected the job
Tony Pulis has been appointed as the new manager of Stoke on a three-year contract.

Former Gillingham and Portsmouth boss Pulis was unveiled at a news conference on Friday.

The 44-year-old Welshman was delighted to have been offered the chance to step back into management.

"The club is a fantastic football club," he said. "I'm really excited by the job."

Pulis has high hopes for the club and is looking to emulate Gary Megson's achievements at West Bromwhich Albion, but he has limited funds to play with.

"What Meggy has done at West Brom - there's no reason why we cannot do the same," he added. "But the initial thing is stability and to stay in the league.

"The chairman has told me I'm going to have to wheel and deal in the transfer market, but it's something I've got used to in the past."

Tony Pulis factfile
Playing career: Bristol Rovers (162 apps), Bristol Rovers, Bournemouth, Gillingham, Newport, Happy Valley (Hong Kong).
Management: Bournemouth (1992-94), Gillingham (1995-99), Bristol City (1999), Portsmouth (2000)
Honours: As player won Division Three title in 1987, took Gills into Division Two in 1996 and won manager of the year award.

The First Division club went for Pulis after George Burley decided not to take the job following a last-minute change of heart.

"We are delighted to have made an appointment and to have filled the position of team manager," said Stoke chairman Gunnar Gislason.

"Not only is he an experienced manager but he has a track record of success as a manager and has a reputation within the game as a good coach.

"Everyone at the club is looking forward to working with Tony and we urge all our fans to unite and get behind the new manager and his team."

Pullis became a qualified FA coach in 1977 at just 19 years of age and by 21 had obtained his Uefa 'A' licence.

He was given his first step in management by Harry Redknapp at Bournemouth as a player-coach before taking over the Cherries in 1992.

Pulis agreed an out-of-court compensation package with his last club Portsmouth this week over his sacking in October 2000.

He was replaced as Pompey boss by Steve Claridge and given a four-month leave of absence to fight a court battle with Gillingham over his dismissal.

He will take over at Stoke with immediate effect and will be in charge for Saturday's game at Walsall.

Dave Kevan, who had been serving as caretaker-boss, will revert to his role as first-team coach.

Long-term

Burley had been first choice to succeed Steve Cotterill, who left to team up with Howard Wilkinson at Sunderland.

Burley, out of a job since his sacking by Ipswich last month, held talks with Stoke on Wednesday.

And he watched their 2-1 defeat by Watford from the front row of the directors' box at the Britannia Stadium.

"With Steve Cotterill leaving Stoke, the club wanted someone long-term and I wasn't able to commit to that," said Burley.

Former Middlesbrough manager Bryan Robson and Adrian Heath, who began his playing career at Stoke, had also been linked with the post.

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 ON THIS STORY
 Stoke boss Tony Pullis
"I'll have to wheel and deal"
Click here for all the latest from the My Club section


Match coverage
See also:

11 Oct 02 | Ipswich Town
29 Oct 02 | Eng Div 1
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