Stoke City manager Tony Pulis claims his side are not operating on a level playing field to the “top six or seven” six in the Premier League but has called upon his players to “do their best” when they take on Manchester United this weekend.
The Potters have picked up one point from a possible 24 against the Red Devils since their Premier League debut in 2008 and Pulis believes the end result on Saturday is largely out of Stoke’s hands due to the difference in stature between the clubs.
Pulis told reporters: "The most important thing is that you go out there and do your best.
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"But it is not a level playing field when you are playing against the top six or seven sides - you just look at the players they have, the money they have spent and their turnover compared to other clubs in the Premier League.
"United are one of those sides, but we will go up there and do our best - it is all we can do."
Stoke have had a formidable start to the Premier League campaign, facing Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester City and Liverpool already, but Pulis insists there is no easy game in the Premier League when playing those sides he believes to be operating on a different level to most others.
"We go to Old Trafford, which will be a real tough one, and then we are through that run of games," Pulis continued.
"The other games we will play will be really tough because they are Premier League sides, and I have the greatest respect for this league and every team in it.
"But there are clubs without a question of a doubt that are on a different level to what we are, and we will have played five or six of them after Saturday."