Stoke City: Andy Wilkinson urges fans to keep the faith
STOKE stalwart Andy Wilkinson has urged fans who are still in two minds about renewing their season tickets to keep faith with the manager and his players.
Attempts to match last year's sale of around 22,000 season tickets have been hampered by a run of one win in 10 games – and fans only have until next Wednesday to renew at the cheapest prices.
Wilkinson, who made his 150th league appearance for the club on Sunday, said: "If the fans sign up and we know they are going to be there next season, it will push us on for the rest of this season."
He acknowledged the present frustration among supporters, observing: "It's understandable, but if we can get a win on Saturday against West Brom we can push on and get a good finish to the season.
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"We need to stick together, work together and get the fortress back at the Britannia. The fans are a massive part of that."
Wilkinson admitted the dressing room will have to lift itself after being left in a sombre mood by Newcastle's injury-time winner on Sunday.
"There's no worse feeling, especially in the last minute, and we were all devastated."
Wilkinson acknowledged that manager Tony Pulis could be in the firing line with disgruntled fans, but insisted the players had to shoulder their share of blame for recent results.
"We are the ones who are on the pitch. He cannot play for us, so we are the ones who have to take responsibility."
Pulis is hoping Stoke's chances against West Brom will be enhanced if Matthew Etherington can shake off his recent back problem and declare himself available.
STOKE'S under-21 team were beaten by a late penalty in going down 1-0 against Reading in their latest league outing.