Pulis eyes January bargains
Published 30/12/2013 | 18:02
Crystal Palace manager Tony Pulis will enter the January transfer window with the experience of signing players who can not only help in the fight against relegation but also benefit the Eagles financially.
Pulis took over at Selhurst Park in November with Palace struggling to adapt to the Barclays Premier League following their promotion through the play-offs.
His predecessor Ian Holloway went on a summer recruitment drive that saw 16 new faces enter the club, something which he believes played a part in his departure from Palace as his new-look squad failed to gel.
Since Pulis' arrival, the Eagles have won three games and now sit outside the bottom three on goal difference with a tantalising New Year's Day clash at home to fellow strugglers Norwich to come.
But the 55-year-old Welshman still wants to add to his squad when the transfer window opens and is determined to be as wily with his business as he has been in the past.
"Every club I've been at, I don't think anyone can decry me spending too much and not giving them a return on their money," he said.
"I have always prided myself in that respect and if I bring players in they will be coming in to help us initially stay in the Premier League.
"If they are older players you keep the value by staying in the Premier League or they are young and they actually gain value.
"At Stoke if you look at [Ryan] Shawcross, [Asmir] Begovic, [Marc] Wilson and [Steven] Nzonzi - they have all maintained Premier League football for Stoke City.
"Their value now compared to what we paid at the time would have gone through the roof - if we could do the same at this football club then I would be doing somersaults.
"I'm hoping and praying that one or two things will drop for us. Both in terms of players who are not in the squad or around the squad, moving them on and letting them play. That might leave us a little room to manoeuvre and bring a few in."
Despite a turnaround in fortunes, which has seen Palace record much-needed victories over West Ham, Cardiff and Aston Villa, Pulis refuses to get too carried away with the impact he has had on the players.
"I'm just concerned about the next game and the next game," he said.
"If you pat yourself on the back for having a good performance this game will kick you up the backside but if you get down and depressed you drag other people down with you.
"You have to be upbeat and positive and though it affects you, you have to get over it as soon as you can - whether that is a good or a bad performance.
"When I say I'm never happy - I think you can never be happy with your lot. If you are driven then you strive to improve, you mustn't confuse that for not being happy. In respect of striving to get better all the time that is who I am."
Even being outside the bottom three bares no significance for Pulis.
"It is the New Year, it is not the end of the season," he added.
"The most important thing is that we stay focused and that we prepare properly for Wednesday and the next game, until the end of the season or until we get the points to keep us in the Premier League."
Pulis will be sweating over the fitness of striker Cameron Jerome, who was forced off in the 1-0 defeat at Manchester City, but is hopeful midfield duo Stuart O'Keefe and Kagisho Dikgacoi will be involved against Norwich.