Tony Pulis still struggles to believe he managed to lure Kenwyne Jones away from Sunderland. Jones is aiming to score in his fifth successive game when the Potters face Blackburn today.
And that goal run has left Pulis feeling like he’s struck gold after persuading Black Cats boss Steve Bruce to let him snap up the striker for an £8million fee.
He said: “Steve had a high opinion of Kenwyne, but he thought it was about the right time for him to move. We’ve been lucky enough to pick him up.
“I think his form is down to the fact he just feels more comfortable around the place.
“We make players feel as though this is their and a nice place to work.
“They enjoy it and we make sure they give us the commitment back.
“They respect the football club and respect what the club has done for them – and they do their damnedest when the bell goes on a Saturday to get the result they all need. And in Kenwyne’s case he’s got a bit more confidence and he’s a lot more settled in his mind. I think that’s a big thing with players, if they’re settled ‘’
Pulis signed Jones on loan for Stoke for a month when he was just 20 and has been impressed with the hitman’s development since those days.
He added: “I had him here before on loan five years ago from Southampton and he’s matured since then in terms of age and experience.
“When he first came here he was a young lad but now you can tell he’s grown into a man.
“I don’t think he bullies centre-halves. He has scored really good goals with his strength and cleverness.‘’
Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce revealed he tried to sign Jones before he joined Stoke.
“We would have bought him this season if we could have afforded him,” said the Rovers boss. “But he was out of our price range unfortunately.”
Sheron: It would be great to see Jones break record.
By: Jonny Abrams (Sport.co.uk).
Stoke City legend Mike Sheron says that he would be delighted to see Kenwyne Jones break his club record of scoring in seven consecutive games.
Sheron managed the feat between March and April 1996 as he went on to secure his place in Potters fans’ affections with 39 goals in 71 starts before joining QPR for £2.75m.
£8m man Jones has now scored in four successive games in what has been a blistering start to his career at the Britannia Stadium, and Sheron insists he would not be bitter about seeing the Trinidad and Tobago centre-forward usurp him in the Stoke history books.
Thisisstaffordshire.co.uk quote Sheron as saying: "I had noticed that Kenwyne had got a few goals, and all with his head.
“Actually, I think a few of mine in that run were with my head, but I he's a bit better in the air than I was.
"He has a lot of attributes. He's got a bit of pace and he obviously knows where the goal is.
"People say records are always there to be broken and I'm sure mine will be broken one day, so why not now?
"It would be great to see him do it. And for him to do it in the Premier League would make it even better."
Martin Keown: There's only one way to stop Stoke star Kenwyne Jones...bully him!
By Martin Keown (Dailymail).
Tony Pulis struggled to find the right striker — he wasn’t happy with Dave Kitson, James Beattie or Tuncay — but Kenwyne Jones looks perfect for him.
He is well suited to Stoke’s direct approach and he is as good a jumper from a standing position as I have ever seen, even though his finishing could be improved.
The best of that type I played against was Les Ferdinand and you had to be strong against him.
It’s very difficult to mark Jones because normally you try to get close to that kind of player so he can’t wriggle free, but he is so strong that he gets to the ball first. Look how he has often got the better of John Terry.
You have to be physical with that kind of striker, bully him and go in hard. You have to stop him finding space — that means blocking him off so he can’t get near the keeper and bringing in a midfielder in front of him.
Newcastle didn’t do that and they made the mistake of having Andy Carroll — a striker — mark him at set pieces. I think your best defender should mark the opposition striker. You can set your team up to stop him, too.
By playing a high line and pressing you are forcing Jones to run in behind you, which isn’t his strength. Sitting deep invites teams to ping endless balls into the box. Inevitably you will concede.