How many? – Stoke City boss puts a figure on the number of new players he wants this summer



Michael O’Neill says he is drawing up a hit-list of viable summer transfer targets to try and have Stoke City challenging for the Premier League.

O’Neill, who remains confident of survival this season, says recruitment is vital to the future success of a club which has suffered with poor signings.

Speaking at last night’s Fan Forum in the Waddington Suite, O’Neill told an audience of around 200: “We are still evaluating what we have and what we will need to eventually be pushing for the Premier League.

“It’s not about numbers, it’s about the right types of player, and they should see this as a big opportunity, a big club and a forward step in their career and think `I’m going to go into the Premier League with this club.’

“So we are trying to create in the building a real hunger, which we have, but we want to increase that to create the right culture, which we tried to do in this window with the two youngsters and James Chester.

“There’s a lot of work to be done between now and the summer. I don’t think we need loads of players, We possibly need three or four in key areas that will help us improve.”

O’Neill, who signed Chester on loan to go with the permanent signings of midfielders Jordan Thompson and Tashan Oakley-Boothe in January, continued: “We want a team that is dominant in possession and also score goals. Also running power and speed is important to have.

“Attacking full backs is another feature of that system as well, so there’s all little areas we are looking to improve.

“I probably don’t see wholesale changes to the club.

“What we don’t want to do is go and sign 10 players in the summer and then the dressing room is too small (to accommodate them) again.”





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