Stoke City boss Tony Pulis admits he really wanted to sign Demba Ba after the Newcastle United striker's hat-trick last night.

Ba may have got a rough reception from the home crowd but Pulis had no issues with the player.

"We really fancied Demba for a while but people have to remember we were paying £9million for him with his wages and everything else," he said.

"The medical people at this club are fantastic and they didn't think his knee was a risk we could take at that time.

"Taking him on a free is a different option and he has certainly done well at West Ham and at Newcastle.

"He has no problems from me."