Today's Tony Pulis Talking Points
Anthony Richard "Tony" Pulis (born 16 January 1958) is a Welsh football manager and former footballer who is the head coach of West Bromwich Albion.
Pulis obtained his FA coaching badge at the age of 19, followed by his UEFA 'A' licence aged 21 – making him one of the youngest professional players ever to have obtained the qualification. His son, Anthony, was a professional footballer and played at Stoke. Pulis had a seventeen-year career as a defender where he played for Bristol Rovers, Newport County, Bournemouth and Gillingham. He also had a short spell in Hong Kong with Happy Valley.
Pulis took his first steps into management at Bournemouth, where he was a player/coach and then Harry Redknapp's assistant. He then took control when Redknapp left the club. He then went on to Gillingham before leaving in 1999 after a dispute with chairman Paul Scally. Pulis then had unsuccessful spells at Bristol City and Portsmouth before being appointed manager of Stoke City in 2002. He guided Stoke through a tough 2002–03 season avoiding relegation to the Second Division on the final day of the season. He spent two more seasons with Stoke before being sacked by Stoke's Icelandic board for 'failing to exploit the foreign market'. He spent the 2005–06 season at Plymouth Argyle before returning to Stoke along with Peter Coates. After narrowly missing out on a play-off spot in the 2006–07 season he guided Stoke City to the Premier League in the 2007–08 season by finishing runners-up in the Football League Championship.
With Stoke amongst the favourites for relegation upon their return to the top flight after a 23-year absence Stoke went on to comfortably survive and finished in 12th position. Pulis made history during the 2010–11 season as he guided Stoke to their first FA Cup Final after beating Bolton Wanderers 5–0 in the semi-final. The "Potters" lost the final 1–0 to Manchester City but had the consolation of qualifying for European football. In the UEFA Europa League Stoke were drawn against Croatian side Hajduk Split and after two legs ran out 2–0 winners. After beating FC Thun Stoke were handed a tough group containing Beşiktaş, Dynamo Kyiv and Maccabi Tel Aviv which Stoke managed to progress through finishing in second position. City's reward was a tie against Spanish giants Valencia, but despite putting up a spirited second-leg performance, Stoke went out 2–0 on aggregate. The 2012–13 season saw Stoke make little progress and Pulis left the club by mutual consent on 21 May 2013.
Pulis returned to management on 23 November 2013 joining Crystal Palace on a two-and-a-half-year contract. He guided Palace away from relegation, to their highest Premier League finish of 11th in 2013–14, which earned him the Premier League Manager of the Season award. He left the club, however, shortly before the start of the subsequent season. He joined West Bromwich Albion in January 2015.Close