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Stoke boss Pulis battling to strike personal terms with West Ham striker Cole

Stoke City boss Tony Pulis is battling to close a deal for West Ham United striker Carlton Cole.

The Sentinel says any prospective move has been delayed because Cole is currently away in Switzerland as part of the Hammers' 26-man pre-season training squad, while Pulis is overseeing Stoke's preparations in Austria.

But the suspicion remains that a stand-off suits the player's contingent to give other clubs time to step in with a bid for the 28-year-old Londoner.

Premier League new boys QPR have also been linked with a move for the England international as they plan for their return to the top flight.

 It's kicking off again! Click here for your No1 source for Stoke transfer market news and gossip.

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