Stoke City boss Tony Pulis is looking forward to the January transfer window and the opportunity to strengthen his squad. "Our supporters understand the situation we are in," Pulis told The Sentinel.

"The one disappointment is that the transfer window doesn't open for another week or so.

"It suits the bigger clubs with the bigger squads because they can bring in international players to cover for injuries and suspensions.

"We certainly missed Mama Sidibe, and when Salif Diao plays he's our best midfielder by a country mile. We are a little bit down on players after losing so many, especially big players down the spine of the team.

"We have a good chairman who's running the club properly and we are doing OK. We just have to try to get over the next couple of weeks until the window opens and hopefully bring in one or two reinforcements."