Stoke City boss Tony Pulis sends his number two to face Press conference following win over Norwich City
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
Stoke boss Tony Pulis avoided newspaper reporters after his side's victory over the Canaries – instead sending in assistant manager David Kemp to field questions from the written media.
However, Pulis, under fire and under pressure in recent weeks, did talk to the BBC and the club's website.
Following back-to-back wins for the first time since December, Stoke have hit the 40-point mark he has long insisted would be enough for safety.
With the Potters eight points clear of the bottom three, it would take a remarkable turn of events for them to be relegated now.
'We've got what we wanted – 40 points,' said Pulis. 'But we'll wait and analyse what happens in the Aston Villa-Sunderland game, then take it from there.
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'I hope this is enough now to secure our sixth season in the Premier League, but we're not mathematically safe yet and we certainly cannot relax until that is the case.'
Perhaps in a pointed remark to his critics, Pulis believes people should appreciate what he has done at Stoke.
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'A sixth season in the Premier League would be a remarkable achievement when you consider just how far we have come over the past 7½ years,' added Pulis.
'We were a mid-table Championship club going absolutely nowhere and getting crowds of 12,000 to 13,000 each week, and now look where we are. It's a fantastic success story and everyone at the club should be proud of what we have done in such a short space of time.
'Not only have we stayed in the Premier League, but this is the first time we have got close to being in any sort of trouble.'
Pulis was pleased with his side's first home win since February 9.
'I felt we were unfortunate in the end not to have scored more goals. That's two successive clean sheets and Norwich, who are a good side who work their socks off, have hardly had a chance all afternoon,' he said.
There were few laughs from the managerial double act as Kemp defended the manager's record and Stoke's style of play.
'If you are a manager of a football club, particularly a Premier League football club in this day and age, and things are not going well you are a target to be hit – a coconut on the coconut shy,' said Kemp.
'It hasn't affected him (Pulis) or anybody else. We just get on with it.
'The stadium is full up every week, everybody is happy when we win, like we did today. If you're not winning people are looking for ways to criticise. That's the world we're in.
'I like winning. I liked the style of play today and enjoyed it last week. When you lose, you can pick a hole in something, can't you?