Michael Owen's hopes of receiving a welcome birthday present from Stoke manager Tony Pulis have been put on hold.
Owen declared himself "raring to go" after coming through 70 minutes of a behind-closed-doors friendly on Tuesday in a bid to step up his fitness after struggling with groin and hamstring niggles. There was the prospect of Owen making his first appearance for Stoke since October 27.
But ahead ahead of his 33rd birthday on Friday and Saturday's visit of Everton, Pulis says Owen still needs at least another week, and said: "Michael did smashing on Tuesday, came through 70 minutes, but he needs more work on the training ground, a bit more strength"
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