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The manager wants to use the borrowing market to get some first-team experience for some of the Potters' fringe players and developing talent to see if they sink or swim

Stoke City boss Tony Pulis wants young talent in his squad to go out on loan and prove themselves worthy of the Potters first team.

The Belgian teenager Florent Cuvelier made 18 appearances and scored four goals during a temporary spell with League One side Walsall last season, and Pulis is backing the former Portsmouth man to reach the highest level.

Current first-team players Ryan Shotton and Andy Wilkinson have benefitted from loan spells away from the Britannia, and Pulis cites the 'sink-or-swim' nature of first-team football as vital in the development of a player.

"All of them were nowhere near our first team but they went out on loan and showed they could swim," Pulis told The Sentinel.

"Some maintain that level and some drop off, I accept that, but you have to get them out there to test them.

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"If we think they are good enough, then we should be getting them out playing football.

"That's why we got him [Cuvelier] out on loan to Walsall in January and he did brilliantly there. But until that point he was struggling in our reserve games.

"It just shows that the quicker we can get them out into league football the better because it either makes or breaks them.

"He's done smashing at Walsall and we will look to get him out again because he doesn't need to be hanging around the reserves.

"Wherever he goes, he needs to be involved; he needs to be at the cutting edge."

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