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Saturday 30 August 2014

Pulis pride in bench strength

Published 29/11/2012 | 06:29

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Tony Pulis praised the attitude of his substitutes

Tony Pulis played down his own role in Stoke's third consecutive home victory and instead praised his super subs as the Potters mounted a late comeback to beat Newcastle 2-1.

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Papiss Cisse gave the visitors the lead two minutes after half-time and it looked like Alan Pardew's team would end their miserable run of three straight Barclays Premier League defeats but in the 81st minute Cameron Jerome crossed for Jonathan Walters to head in, and four minutes later two substitutes combined as Kenwyne Jones set up Jerome for the winner.

The Potters boss said: "The lads have been fantastic, they've not played much this year but the spirit has been very good and their commitment to the group has been fantastic."

He added: "They could easily have come on tonight and just jogged around and done what they wanted to do for themselves, but the effort they put in for the team was there for everybody to see, and that is a real plus for their character. And I think that really typifies what we've got at the football club.

"I thought the first half was very even. The last three games we've hit the post or the bar in every game and not had a break where it's come out to us or it's come off the inside of the post and gone in.

"So when that happened in the first half, you just think maybe it might not be your night. And when Asmir spills one, and he's been absolutely brilliant this season, and they tap it in, again you think it might not be our night.

"We made the substitutions and that brought a little bit of life into the game. I thought it lifted the crowd as well, and the crowd in the last 20 or 25 minutes were absolutely wonderful."

Newcastle boss Alan Pardew was left feeling his side - who have now lost four straight league games for the first time since 2008, when they were relegated - did not get their just desserts.

He said: "Sometimes you have a game plan and your players see it through to the letter and it's pretty galling to look them in the eye and say they've come away with nothing, which I had to do.

"A couple of mistakes cost us the game, and we didn't make many mistakes. It's a tough result for us to take."

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