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Coates hails 'fine' victory over Chelsea

Stoke chairman Peter Coates has praised Mark Hughes and his players for producing one of the best 45 minutes in the Potters' history and believes it will be a platform for the club to climb the Premier League table.

Peter Coates has bankrolled Stoke's success in establishing themselves in the Premier League
Stoke chairman Peter Coates.

• Whittaker: Bring the noise

Coates believes the second half performance in Saturday's 3-2 win over Jose Mourinho's Chelsea stands among the club's finest achievements, after a frustrating start to the season.

The fightback to victory was the first time Stoke had succeeded in defeating Chelsea in 11 attempts in the Premier League and their first in the league against the Blues since 1975.

"I guess that second half has to be up there with the very best of occasions we have ever witnessed," Coates said.

"It was a great afternoon, one of those occasions we will remember for a very long time. The best of it was the result, by a million miles, but there was so much more on top of that because there were great performances from everybody and two tremendous finishes.

"Stephen Ireland's second goal for us was terrific, don't forget, while Oussama Assaidi's late winner was something special, wasn't it?

"An afternoon like that can give everyone a lift. Players, management, fans and everybody connected with the club.

"We have found scoring goals difficult and we are aware of that and are working on it because it is something we want to solve.

"It was an exciting afternoon for everybody and just what we all needed."

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