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Stoke keen to secure Etherington to new deal before season kickoff

Stoke City hope to not let new contract talks with Matthew Etherington drag on.

Potters chief Tony Scholes says he would prefer to sort the issue out before City begin the 2010/11 campaign.

He told The Sentinel: "It is Matthew's representatives' job to get the best deal they possibly can and it is our job to make sure the contracts are all reasonable and affordable for the long term benefit of the club.

"The summer is the right time to do it. The last thing in the world you want is for a player to be worrying about these things and then going out to play the following day.

"I am hopeful that will come to an agreement.

"As ever in these things there is a balance and finding the balance is the trick."

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