Date: 6th July 2007 at 8:15am
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Trevor Sinclair and Malcolm Christie have both held talks with Stoke City manager, Tony Pulis.

Sinclair, a former England international, and Christie are free agents after being released by Manchester City and Middlesborough respectively and both were at the Brit yesterday to meet the manager and see the facilities. But it is still unclear whether the club will be able to afford any high wage demands should either of the two Premiership players enter negotiations with the Potters.

If the Potters miss out on the two it will reopen the debate amongst fans as to whether the club has the money to back the ambition to be a Premiership club. But the manager is in a difficult position – if he reveals details of players that they are looking at and subsequently fails to sign them, he risks accusations of ‘a lack of ambition’. If he keeps quiet until a deal is done, fans criticise him for ‘a lack of ambition’ in not looking for new players. Catch 22 situation. On the positive side, the mere fact that players such as Sinclair and Christie will come to talks at the Brit shows how far the club has risen in players’ perception in the past 12 months.

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