Mark Hughes’ men host Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United aiming to build on last Saturday’s win against Sunderland to make it three successive wins in the Premier League in 2017.
Stoke City vs Manchester United:
Competition: Premier League
Date: Saturday 21st January 2017
KO Time: 15.00pm
Venue: bet365 Stadium, Stoke-on-Trent
Latest betting odds (bet365):
Stoke City: 5/1
Our prediction: Stoke to win, and BTTS: 9/1
Long-shot: Xherdan Shaqiri to score anytime, and Stoke City to win 2-0 – 70/1
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Stoke City have seemingly got their Premier League season back underway after back-to-back wins in 2017, and now sit in ninth place in the league – something Hughes’ men have been accustom to over the years.
Last week’s first-half demolition of Sunderland has given Hughes’ side a lot of confidence as they prepare to welcome The Red Devils into Stoke-on-Trent tomorrow afternoon looking to chase Everton and West Brom for that seventh place spot.
Peter Crouch – who’s been somewhat rejuvenated – is looking for his 100th Premier League goal tomorrow as he sits on 99 following last weekend’s header at the Stadium of Light.
Marko Arnautovic looked to his best against Sunderland, and Hughes will also have Spanish play-maker Bojan Krkic back at his disposal after confirming Stoke aren’t in talks with anyone over any potential move.
Julien Ngoy will also be looking to impress Hughes after tasting first-team football over the last couple of weeks, and what better stage to do it on than against Manchester United?
What the manager has said:
MH: “United for me, is always a huge game and one I love to do well in.
“We’re playing them amid the run of a really strong run of form and their team is shaping into a Jose Mourinho side now.
“There is an expectation on United to come here and win, although we want to have something to say about that.”
MATCH FACTS – [BBC Sport]
- Stoke are unbeaten in their last three home league games against Manchester United (W2, D1).
- Bojan Krkic and Marko Arnautovic scored in the Potters’ 2-0 home win over United last season.
- United have won just one of their last four clashes with the Potters (D2, L1).
- Stoke have gone four home league games without defeat, keeping three clean sheets, and have lost only one of their last eight at the bet365 Stadium (W4, D3) .
- Peter Crouch needs one more goal to become the 26th player to score 100 in the Premier League. If he achieves the feat on Saturday he would become the first Stoke player to score in four consecutive Premier League matches.
- Mark Hughes has lost only two of his eight home league matches as a manager against Manchester United (W3, D3). The most recent of those was Manchester City’s 1-0 defeat in November 2008.
- Manchester United are unbeaten in 16 matches in all competitions (W12, D4), with their last defeat coming on 3 November away to Fenerbahce in the Europa League.
- They could win five consecutive away matches in all competitions for the first time since September to October 2012.
- United haven’t conceded more than one goal in a Premier League match since losing 4-0 away to Chelsea on 23 October.
- Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s 14 league goals have earned United 11 points this season; no player has won more for his side. Diego Costa has also earned 11 points for Chelsea.
- Jose Mourinho has lost two of his three Premier League visits to Stoke, his joint-highest loss percentage at any Premier League ground (level with the Riverside Stadium)
Jose Mourinho has a near full-strength squad to choose from tomorrow as Manchester United head to Stoke-on-Trent on the back of a stunning unbeaten run which spans to 12 Premier League games.
Memphis Depay and Morgan Schneiderlin have recently departed Old Trafford, and Eric Bailly is set to miss out for United tomorrow.
Another England international who is looking for a landmark tomorrow like Crouchy is Wayne Rooney. The United star is one goal away from breaking the clubs all-time top-scoring record and he will be desperate to notch sooner rather than later.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Marcos Rojo both returned last week against Liverpool, and both are expected to start tomorrow.
Luke Shaw is still recovering from injury, and will not make tomorrow’s game.
What the manager has said:
JM: “We are not going to play any match to try to be unbeaten for one more match, or to try to reach 18 or 20, not at all.
“We want to win matches, we try to win matches, we risk to win matches.
“If we lose, we lose, and we lose the unbeaten run. We are not going to Stoke to defend our unbeaten run – it’s a very nice run, I have to admit, but we are not going there to defend the record.”