Pulis fires broadside in reply to Wenger attack

Some Premier League matches are instantly forgettable, others fester and Stoke City's win over Arsenal on Saturday has fallen firmly into the latter category. Tony Pulis, the victorious manager, continued the bitter fall-out yesterday by criticising Arsène Wenger, who had been critical of the coverage given to his side following the match and of Stoke's tactics during it, claiming the home side had deliberately tried to injure his players.

"In Stoke-on-Trent on Saturday evening, Mr Wenger talked openly about Arsenal's encounter with Stoke as being a 'typical English encounter'," Pulis said. "He commended my team's organisation, my team's commitment and confessed that on the day Stoke City thoroughly deserved to win the game. Very open and very honest.

"In London 48 hours later and 150 miles away from Stoke-on-Trent, Mr Wenger changed tack and has tried to rewrite history. Remember there was only one red card on Saturday and the last time I watched the game it certainly was not a Stoke City player who received it." It was Arsenal's Robin Van Persie, who was dismissed for a shove on the Stoke goalkeeper Thomas Sorensen.

Pulis insisted there was no way his players would deliberately set out to injure opponents. "As for Rory Delap's challenges on Theo Walcott and Bacary Sagna, Rory is as honest and committed as they come," he added. "They were free-kicks, but Rory would never purposely go out to injure a fellow professional, it's just not in Rory's nature. Further, as I recall the game, Emmanuel Adebayor was booked for a chest-high challenge on Ryan Shawcross."

The Stoke City chairman Peter Coates strongly rejected Wenger's claims that his team played in a dirty manner. "I'm very disappointed because I don't think that's the case at all," Coates said. "We don't play like that. We are not that sort of team.

"I'm sure that none of our players would deliberately go out to injure anyone, so it is most disappointing to hear someone like Arsène Wenger make that comment but that is up to him. That wasn't the game I saw, it wasn't the game the fans at the ground saw and it wasn't the game that the referee saw," Coates added.

Wenger had previously complained that Shawcross had deliberately fouled Adebayor when he was off the pitch and that Delap had fouled Walcott and Sagna intentionally. Walcott has a shoulder injury and Sagna an ankle problem.

Adebayor's ankle problem will rule him out for three weeks. He missed last night's match against Fenerbahce and is also ruled out of the Gunners' most important League game of the season thus far, the home match against Manchester United on Saturday. With Van Persie banned and Eduardo also still injured, Arsenal have a paucity of talent at their disposal for such a crucial match.

Adebayor will also miss at least two more domestic and European matches. Wenger was furious with Stoke's physical tactics in Arsenal's 2-1 loss. "All the players have been injured deliberately," Wenger had said. "The only intention is to hurt you and I can show some tackles where I can prove what I say. The one who is tackling is not the brave one. For me the brave one is the player who is trying to play football."

While Adebayor is out for three weeks, the other players should be back sooner. "Walcott could be days or weeks. It is the shoulder he had the surgery on," he said. We don't know about [William] Gallas." Gallas missed the Stoke game with a hamstring problem and did not start against Fenerbahce but could be in contention for the Manchester United match at the weekend.

In the immediate aftermath of the game Wenger admitted his team could not cope with Stoke's aerial threat. "Yes, we had a plan, of course," Wenger said of Stoke's tactics, including the long throws from Delap. "We worked on it a lot. But those kind of goals, straight into the box with 20 people there, it is not our greatest strength to deal with that. We were punished, but at the end of the day Stoke deserved their victory."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Child's play: letting young people roam outdoors directly contradicts the current climate
lifeHow much independence should children have?
Arts and Entertainment
Tycoons' text: Warren Buffett and Bill Gates both cite John Brookes' 'Business Adventures' as their favourite book
booksFind out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Arts and Entertainment
<p>Troubled actor Robert Downey Jr cements his comeback from drug problems by bagging the lead role in Iron Man. Two further films follow</p>
filmRobert Downey Jr named Hollywood's highest paid actor for second year running
Life and Style
Dale Bolinger arranged to meet the girl via a fetish website
Sign here, please: Magna Carta Island
propertyYours for a cool £4m
Life and Style
The Commonwealth flag flies outside Westminster Abbey in central London
Arts and Entertainment
Struggling actors who scrape a living working in repertory theatres should get paid a 'living wage', Sir Ian McKellen has claimed
Skye McCole Bartusiak's mother said she didn't use drink or drugs
peopleActress was known for role in Mel Gibson film The Patriot
Arts and Entertainment
tvWebsite will allow you to watch all 522 shows on-demand
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor