Stoke City: Tony Pulis left devastated by late Newcastle United winner
DEVASTATED Stoke City boss Tony Pulis rounded on Newcastle United match-winner Papiss Cisse after yesterday's last-gasp 2-1 defeat by declaring: "You shouldn't have been on the pitch."
Cisse broke Stoke hearts by tucking away Newcastle's injury-time winner to leave City nursing a third successive defeat.
But Pulis was furious after claiming Cisse should have been shown a red card by referee Andre Marriner earlier in the second half after clashing with Potters defenders Marc Wilson and Ryan Shawcross.
"He's pushed Marc Wilson in the face and he's slapped Ryan," stormed Pulis. "He shouldn't have been on the pitch."
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That added to the sense of injustice as Stoke turned in a much more positive display – only to see the points slip through their grasp after Jon Walters had fired them in front from a 67th-minute penalty.
That lead was wiped out within six minutes when Yohan Cabaye fired in a free-kick to level before Cisse's late show sealed the points for the Toon Army.
"The performance will give everybody a lot of heart," said Pulis, "but the result is devastating and you are distraught after the game because we didn't deserve that.
"The lads have done smashing. It's a very good away display and we looked dangerous all game on the break.
"All the supporters who came will be devastated, like we are, because they've seen their team compete and get nothing for their efforts.
"It's frustrating and I'm absolutely gutted. It hurts."
The defeat left Stoke with just one victory in their last 24 away games in the Premier League, but Pulis remains defiant and supportive of his players.
"Having taken the lead, we have gifted them the equaliser because I thought they had run out of steam and if anything we should have been next to score," he explained.
"The whole team is disappointed and it's been the story of our season away from home.
"By hook or by crook, we have shot ourselves in the foot or not seen games out, but you cannot fault the effort and commitment.
"I'm so disappointed for them because they haven't half put a shift in."
Pulis praised Walters for having the nerve to slot home his penalty after missing his last two spot-kicks, while Steven Nzonzi was singled out for his performance in midfield.
"Everybody has got their opinion on taking penalties," he said, "but if Jon is confident of taking it then I'm quite happy with that. Scoring it will take a weight off his shoulders.
"I thought Steven Nzonzi was back to his best and controlled the midfield. He was fantastic.
"We are 11th in the Premier League with nine games remaining and that isn't bad for Stoke City."
Match action: Pages 44 to 47