Stoke boss Pulis hits back in fixture row

Updated: 22 April 2011 11:49 IST

Stoke manager Tony Pulis has hit back at suggestions his team might not give their best in the controversial rearranged fixture against Manchester City.

London:

Stoke manager Tony Pulis has hit back at suggestions his team might not give their best in the controversial rearranged fixture against Manchester City.

Pulis's side were due to meet City at Eastlands on May 14 but the two clubs' participation in the FA Cup final that weekend means the game has been scheduled for May 17.

If Stoke were to lose the Cup final they could still qualify for next season's Europa League if City were to finish in the top four in the Premier League, potentially at the expense of fifth placed Tottenham, who are currently two points behind Roberto Mancini's side.

That prompted a complaint from Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp, who wants the game played before the Cup final because he is concerned Stoke would know they could benefit from losing and produce a poor performance as a result.

But Pulis said on Thursday: "I can see where he (Redknapp) is coming from but whichever team we send out will do their best.

"The fixture is there, we are happy with it, Manchester City are happy with it and it has nothing to do with anyone else."

"Spurs have played Wigan twice this year, and Wigan have taken four points off them."

"Harry has picked a team on two occasions to win both games. You can never pick a game and say it won't be difficult. We will go out and do our best."

"If they shifted the fixture I would be more annoyed than Harry. Whichever team I pick I expect to win."

Topics : Football Bolton Wanderers Inter Milan Stoke City
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