Last Updated: Tue, 05 Mar 2013 13:59
Stoke chairman Peter Coates has jumped to the defence of Tony Pulis and says the club are still heading in the right direction.
The Potters are on a poor run of form after winning just one Premier League game in the last nine and Pulis came in for some heavy criticism from some sections of the Britannia Stadium crowd following the 1-0 defeat against West Ham.
Coates admits that results have to improve but says Pulis has assembled the best squad in the club's history and is backing his manager to turn things around.
"We are clearly having a bad run and not playing well but I think these are fine margins," he told the Stoke Sentinel. "We did enough in the second half at Fulham to get something out of the game and I didn't think we deserved to lose against West Ham.
"If your team is not doing well, your crowd gets restive. It's no different in Stoke than anywhere else."
But Coates added: "Our current squad is the best we've had and to me that represents progress.
"He (Pulis) has been here seven years and I think fair-minded Stoke supporters would think they were seven good years.
"Our worst finish in the Premier League has been 14th. We would like to finish higher, but this is a highly-competitive game and we are playing in the toughest league in the world."
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