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Stoke City can never take top-flight status for granted: CEO Tony Scholes

Stoke City have managed to reap the lucrative rewards of steering clear of relegation to the Championship with a string of mid-table finishes.

Stoke City, Stoke City english premier league, english premier league, Tony Scholes, football, football news, sports, sports news With the EPL’s $6.46 billion domestic television rights deal kicking in this season, Scholes felt top-flight safety remained the priority for the Potters. (Source: Reuters)

Chief executive Tony Scholes has said that while Stoke City have survived fairly comfortably since earning promotion to the Premier League in 2008, they have never taken their top-flight status for granted. Stoke have managed to reap the lucrative rewards of steering clear of relegation to the Championship, the second tier of English football, with a string of mid-table finishes.

“Football, like many things in life, goes in cycles. We are in a period where, for a number of years, the English league has been the best and, truthfully, looks like remaining so,” he told British media.

“Every time we do a TV deal you ask have we reached a peak? But the answer is ‘no, not yet’. My concern is less about how long that is going to last because I think it will last for at least another five years or more.”

With the Premier League’s 5.14 billion pound ($6.46 billion) domestic television rights deal kicking in this season, Scholes felt top-flight safety remained the priority for the Potters.

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“Of more concern is that we have been in the Premier League for nine years, but all clubs outside the big six arguably have half-an-eye on what if things don’t work out and what if we go down? You have to have a contingency plan in place,” he added.

“That’s the bigger concern because there’s a huge financial gap between the Premier League and the Championship.”

Stoke, who are 12th in the table, host 13th-placed Bournemouth on Nov. 19.

First published on: 11-11-2016 at 05:08:32 pm
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