MX23RW : Wednesday, May 25 18:49:25| >> :60:3046:3046:

Tony Pulis hails "role model" Michael Owen

Pulis hails
© PA Photos
Stoke City manager Tony Pulis expresses his delight at Michael Owen's arrival at the club.

Stoke City manager Tony Pulis has expressed his delight at Michael Owen's arrival at the club.

The Potters boss described the striker as a "a very honourable lad" and identified helping him towards match fitness as his next target.

"It's a great signing for Stoke City. Obviously, we have got to get him on the pitch. We have to get him fit. That's the important thing," he said.

"I think Michael has the bit between his teeth. When Manchester United announced they were going to release him, I rang him up and went and spoke to him.

"He came over as a very honourable lad and I thought, 'Good kid'. Everyone speaks highly of him and he just seems to want to play football."

Pulis went on to hail Owen as "the perfect role model" and pledged to offer him first-team opportunities.

"He was actually available for a lot of Manchester United matches last season but wasn't selected. People say he only played so many games. He was available for a lot more. And we think he's the perfect role model.

"He's more than just an impact sub. We want him in the team and playing."

Owen joined Stoke as a free agent earlier today after the Premier League ratified the deal.

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