According to The Telegraph, it was evident during Stoke City’s 2-2 draw at Wigan Athletic on Saturday that the introduction of Charlie Adam affected the way the Potters went about their game.
The Scottish international Adam replaced Andy Wilkinson in the 36th minute with Stoke 1-0 down in the match. The 26-year-old would have been keen to make a good impression after a disappointing season at Liverpool where he failed to make a real impact at Anfield at was surplus to requirements by Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers.
Adam had said on Friday that he would adapt his technical style of play in order to suit Stoke’s direct style, “the club has been successful in the way that it has played in the last five years and the manager wanted to bring me in to add to the quality that he has. I’m not going to change the way Stoke play. I’m just another part of the jigsaw.”
This piece of the jigsaw appeared evident during the draw at the DW Stadium on Saturday. Adam was at the very core of all the set-pieces and of moments of innovation from Stoke City. Pulis feels that Adam will provide the creative spark that perhaps has been lacking from their play in recent seasons. The Stoke manager will also be hoping that Adam will bring the best out of 6 foot 7 striker Peter Crouch, who, with his aerial ability is the model target man in the Premier League.
Stoke have mustered just one league win in their previous 14 outings. The central midfield area is a position where Pulis has definitely looked to strengthen his squad. As well as signing Adam from Liverpool on transfer deadline day, the Potters also brought in Steven N’Zonzi from Blackburn Rovers and Maurice Edu from Rangers.
In addition, Pulis also signed American defender Geoff Cameron from Houston Dynamo, who is reportedly a long-throw specialist. In an attempt to overturn Stoke’s recent dismal run, the Stoke manager may arguably be looking for upgrades on players such as Glenn Whelan and Rory Delap.
Adam began his career at Rangers where he never managed to break into the first-team. Subsequently, he had loan spells at Ross County and St. Mirren before coming to England to join Blackpool on loan. It was at the Seasiders where Adam enjoyed the happiest spell of his career, scoring arguably the greatest goal in a play-off final against Cardiff City in May 2010.
Adam almost made the perfect start for his new side, when in the dying embers of the game, a deflected free-kick forced Wigan goalkeeper Ali Al-Habsi into making what many pundits are already arguing as a contender for save of the season. The Latics manager Roberto Martinez was full of praise for Al-Habsi’s crucial save, “We see him making those saves as something normal. And that’s the best compliment I can give him.”