The LMA has issued the following statement on behalf of Tony Pulis following his departure from Stoke City Football Club.
The LMA is able to confirm that Tony Pulis has left Stoke City on amicable terms.
Tony Pulis said; “I have enjoyed some wonderful times at Stoke City and nobody was prouder than me when, after 23 years of exile from top-flight football we gained Barclays Premier League status. Of course, having reached the top you then have to find a way to stay there and develop a strategy for a Club that had no infrastructure in place to compete with the top Championship clubs we had left behind, never mind the top Premier League clubs. Over the past five years we have created history by being the only team in this Club’s 150 years existence to remain out of the bottom six in top-flight football for five consecutive seasons. Within our five year period in the Barclays Premier League we have featured in four major cup quarter finals, an FA Cup semi-final and Final. Further, we have encountered, progressed and reached the later stages of a major European cup competition, only to lose out to Spanish giants Valencia.
“During this great run of success on the pitch the Club has also been involved in the building and development of a training ground that now compares to any in the Barclays Premier League. Also, the Britannia Stadium has been revamped and now hosts and looks after virtually full-houses of the Club’s great supporters every other week. Peter, his family and I have enjoyed every inch of the journey; he has been truly a fantastic man to work with. Although I am disappointed, I do understand what he means when he says the Board feels a need to take the Club in a different direction. In leaving I am very proud of what we have all achieved. My immediate staff lead by David Kemp, my backroom staff and all the training ground staff have been absolutely wonderful. To the supporters who have, and rightly so, been congratulated for their outstanding support especially at the Britannia and finally to all the players who have worked under me during the seven year tenure, I give my thanks for what has been a wonderful adventure”.
Richard Bevan, chief executive of the LMA said: “Having joined the Club for his second spell as Manager in the Summer of 2006, Tony achieved 8th place in the Championship with 73 points in his first season and followed that with automatic promotion to the Barclays Premier League the following year. Since then the Club has comfortably maintained top flight status, finishing no lower than 14th over the five year period. This is an exceptional record, during which Tony has very evidently played a major part both on and off the pitch in executing the vision he shared with the Chairman and which has seen a sound infrastructure installed for taking the Club and the team forward and the Britannia Stadium developed into a leading venue for Premier League football. Overall, the added value Tony has brought to the Club is immense and he is to be applauded for a very successful tenure”.