Stoke City: Cameron Jerome set for Championship loan move to Blackburn Rovers
TONY Pulis is prepared to let Cameron Jerome drop down to the Championship to join Blackburn Rovers on loan.
But he insists the move does not signal the end of the 26-year-old former Birmingham and Cardiff striker's Britannia Stadium career.
Blackburn are currently under the caretaker management of Eric Black following the departure of Steve Kean.
And despite picking up his first victory with a 1-0 success against Sheffield Wednesday in midweek, Black is keen to strengthen his attacking hand.
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"Blackburn have enquired about Cameron," Pulis revealed, "and we will see what happens in the next couple of days.
"It would be a three-month loan with a recall available after 28 days if it happens."
Jerome has yet to start a Premier League game this term and has now fallen to fifth in the pecking order following Michael Owen's arrival at the end of August.
Pulis added: "If it comes off, it would be a good one because Cameron is the kind of player that needs game time.
"It's not far away and they are a decent Championship side."
Asked if it spelt the end for Jerome at Stoke, Pulis responded: "No. He would be the first to say he needs to play."
Pulis reiterated there was no way he was letting fellow striker Kenwyne Jones out amid reported interest from the likes of Leicester and next week's opponents Norwich.
"He keeps himself going and fit," said the Stoke boss, "but the way Crouchy has started, it's probably been a pain in Kenwyne's neck because Peter has done exceptionally well so far."
Jones will start on the bench against Sunderland tomorrow (3pm), the club from which he joined Stoke for a then club record £8m two years ago.
Pulis added: "I'm hoping we are doing so well we don't have to bring him on.
"But if we do, I'm sure he will do his best."
Glenn Whelan returned to full training yesterday after being stricken with a hamstring injury for the past three weeks.
But Pulis, enthused by Dean Whitehead's performances as Whelan's midfield replacement at both Liverpool and Manchester United, is unlikely to recall the Ireland international this weekend.
Meanwhile, Pulis revealed he was still ticking off his players about the costly defensive lapses at Old Trafford last weekend.
"The lads are disappointed and we will talk a little bit more about it," he said.
"We have to work hard to keep clean sheets because that wins you games. They have been very disappointed at the lack of concentration."
Pulis raises a glass or two to his 'lodger' O'Neill: Page 50