Paul Lambert's Aston Villa youth policy paying off according to Stoke's Tony Pulis

Tony Pulis: Looking for fifth win in six games on Saturday at Villa Park

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Stoke boss Tony Pulis has backed Aston Villa counterpart Paul Lambert's decision to concentrate on improving results by utilising his younger players.

Villa take on the Potters on Saturday on a three-game unbeaten streak during which inexperienced players such as Andreas Weimann and Nathan Baker have come to the fore.

Pulis knows they will be a dangerous opponent, especially on home turf, despite his own side's excellent run of 13 points in five games that has taken them up to ninth place in the Barclays Premier League.

"I think Paul has decided to go a certain way - he has brought the youngsters in," Pulis said. "We have watched the last few games and they have done exceptionally well.

"With youngsters you have to be patient. He has shown a lot of faith in them and I think they have started to reward him with some very good performances.

"I have a lot of respect for Paul - I think he has done smashing wherever he has been, and Villa is a great football club. We know it is going to be a very tough game.

"We will have good runs and we will have bad runs. You have got lots of things happening around you - lots of people who have an opinion on why you are doing well or badly.

"That is part and parcel of it and you just have to make sure you stay focused as a group, keep believing in what you are doing and hope the results drop for you.

"We have to be at our maximum every game to get results in the Premier League - we are not good enough to do anything other than that. Luckily, in most of the games this year we have been at that maximum, and from that we have managed to get the results that I think we have deserved.

"But there is a long way to go and we have to get to those 40 points. I don't care what anybody says - that is our main aim every time we start a Premier League season."

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What will be the outcome in the match Aston Villa vs Stoke?

  • Aston Villa
  • Draw
  • Stoke