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Page last updated at 07:47 GMT, Wednesday, 20 May 2009 08:47 UK

Wilkinson offered new Stoke deal

Andy Wilkinson
Wilkinson only signed a new deal with Stoke in January

Stoke City defender Andy Wilkinson has been offered a new deal at the club.

The 24-year-old had a clause in his contract which said if he played more than 16 Premier League games, he would be entitled to negotiate new terms.

The full-back from Stone, near Stoke, has played 22 games this season after coming through the club's academy.

He told BBC Radio Stoke: "It was hard to start with - I had to get the club captain [Andy Griffin] out of his place. Hopefully I deserve a new deal."

Wilkinson has become one of the first names on manager Tony Pulis's team sheet, and has been involved in 16 of the 18 games since the turn of the year.

"My brother was saying to me the other day that it doesn't seem quite real, it's me out there playing, but it doesn't seem like it is. It's been a proud moment for me and my family," he said.

He has spent loan spells at Blackpool and Partick Thistle, and before this season had only made 41 appearances for the Potters since turning professional in 2001.

He concluded: "Some days I have to wake up and pinch myself, like 'is this really happening?' but, I'm just thankful of the gaffer [Pulis] giving me my chance, and I've proven I am good enough for this level."

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