Woodgate relishing revival in Potteries

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Stoke City's summer defender signing Jonathan Woodgate is enjoying his new life in the Potteries, and has been working hard to please Tony Pulis in an effort to maintain his place in the first team.

But the 31-year-old added that the boss had been very understanding about his training constraints, with the pair looking to avoid any further injuries, an issue which has affected the player throughout his career.

"I've enjoyed it to be fair. I've just been working hard. I worked hard in the off-season to get really fit and did lots of strength work," said Woodgate.

"I've just trained every day and looked after myself in the right way. If I don't train (outdoors) the manager has been good. I know when I need to have a day in the gym. It's a matter of trust between us.

"We've got some good defenders and that's the best thing when you get competition for places. You know if you play badly that somebody will step in and take your place."


Woodgate was also relishing the European challenge ahead, after Stoke progressed to the group stages of the Europa League.

"We are taking it seriously because it's a great experience for players to be playing in Europe," the former Spurs centre back continued.

“Going to Besiktas, the atmosphere will be unreal. The crowd are really on top of you in Turkey. I think I've played there against Besiktas, I know I've played against Galatasaray.

"The atmosphere is brilliant out there. They are so passionate that when players sign for clubs in Turkey, the fans are there waiting for them at the airport when they arrive."

Stoke take on Dynamo Kiev on the 15th September after flying through the knockout qualifying stage of the competition.

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Jonathan Woodgate
Stoke City
Premier League

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