Build-Up To The New Season – Stoke

Team: Stoke City

Nickname: The Potters

Founded: 1863

Manager: Mark Hughes

Stadium Name: bet365 Stadium

Stadium Capacity: 27,902

Major Honours: (2) Second Division, (2) Third Division, (1) League Cup, (2) Football League Trophy

Main Rivals: Wolves, West Brom, Port Vale

Biggest Win v Brighton: 5-1 (April 2006)

Biggest Defeat v Brighton: 3-1 (September 1959)

Last Meeting: Stoke 3-0 Brighton (19/2/11)

When Do They Play Brighton: Saturday 18th November (AMEX Stadium), Saturday 10th February (bet365 Stadium)

 

Players To Watch:

Goalkeeper: Jack Butland

Defender: Ryan Shawcross

Midfielder: Xherdan Shaqiri

Striker: Bojan

 

Stoke started the season winless in their first 7 games, losing 4, before a run of 3 straight wins. 2 wins in their next 9 saw them looking over their shoulders. They only won 6 of their 19 second half of the season games, but yet finished in a reletivly decent position for a team who had lost 16 games during the season. This season might be a stretch too far for the Potters, who have sold arguably their best player in Marko Arnautovic, and are yet to make wavelengths in the transfer market to replace the influential midfielder. Supporters are worried that anything similar to last season's performances, which in some cases were beyond poor, they could be in a relegation scrap. They are favourites to be bottom of the table by Matchday 3, with away games at Everton and West Brom and a tough home game against Arsenal, and coming away from those games with nothing on the board could leave them worrying very early on.

 

Last Season’s Finish: 13th

Predicted Finish 17th

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