We Just Can’t Lose can we?

Is this Stoke’s biggest game for a decade?

Stoke face a Barnsley side on Saturday that has six pointer written all over it, no six pointer game is bigger, if Stoke lose then no Stoke fan would fume at Paddy Power for paying out on Stoke been relegated due to the the remaining fixtures Stoke have to face.

Saturday’s game will be the 60th time Stoke have faced Barnsley with the results being pretty level between the two sides.

Won 21

Lost 22

Drew 16

Last 10 meetings

Lost 3
Won 4
Drew 3

Stoke are unbeaten in the last 3 meetings, the Corresponding fixture this season Stoke won 4-2 in Micheal O’Neill’s first fixture as manager. Sam Clucas got a brace with Joe Allen & Gregory scoring the others.


Barnsley’s Form


Barnsley have won 5 of the last 8 games & are unbeaten since the restart of the league

Last 3 results

Wigan 3-0 Stoke
Stoke 0-2 Middlesbrough 
Reading 1-1 Stoke

Barnsley 2-0 Blackburn
Barnsley 0-0 Millwall
QPR 0-1 Barnsley 

What does everyone expect from the game versus Barnsley?

Wigan versus Stoke preview

Wigan versus Stoke Preview


Tonight’s game has become massive, if it wasn’t big enough already. All the results bar Huddersfield went against Stoke at the weekend leaving the Potters just 1 point above the relegation zone with 7 games to play. We shouldn’t have to be relying on other teams losing games for us to stave of the unthinkable, but the performances in our last two games have gave us no hope we can keep our destiny in our own hands. Wigan away has not proved a good hunting ground having not won at the DW Stadium in the league since 2005

We have faced Wigan 33 times in our history

Won 12
Lost 8
Drew 13


Last 10 meetings

Lost 3
Won 2 
Drew 5


Stoke have won the last two meetings, the Corresponding fixture this season Stoke won 2-1, Danny Batth got stoke back into the game making it 1-1. Mame Diouf came on as a late substitute to score a 93rd minute winner.
Form


Wigan are the form team in the league. They have not lost since the 8th of February. They have taken 16 points from the last 18 on offer which has dragged them out of the bottom 3 and now 4 points ahead of the Potters.

Last 3 results


Stoke 0-2 Middlesbrough 
Reading 1-1 Stoke
Stoke 5-1 Hull

Wigan 2-0 Blackburn
Huddersfield 0-2 Wigan
Wigan 0-0 Luton

What does everyone expect from the game versus Wigan?

Getting too close for comfort

Could the worst really happen at Stoke


Michael O’Neill has said the club needs 3 or 4 wins to avoid relegation out of the remaining 7 games.


When we have probably just played 2 of the easier games of the 9 we had left after the restart, not registering a win doesn’t bode well, especially in the manner of the performances in the games.


Stoke now face a trip to Wigan who are the most inform team in the league, who have managed to get 16 points out the last 18 available. 


Stoke were on a good run of our own prior to the lockdown, but it looks as if other teams around us have good back into the swing of it a lot quicker than us.


Our last 7 fixtures


Wigan away
Barnsley home
Leeds away
Birmingham home
Bristol City away
Brentford home
Forest away 


Can anyone see 3 or 4 wins?

Stoke v Middlesbrough

Stoke take on Middlesbrough in a game that could show us how the rest of the season could pan out


Stoke’s next three fixtures could decide what division we could be competing in next season. Prior to the lockdown, we could of looked at these 3 games as 7 points in the bag. That has all changed especially as Saturday’s opponents Middlesbrough have sacked Jonathan Woodgate . The appointment of Warnock, a manager I’m sure Stoke have failed to register a win against has made this fixture a lot harder than it was.

Middlesbrough do have issues to get around, Mainly getting 6 first team players to sign a new contract to allow them to play past the Stoke game. If they can’t then that alone could resign them to a very hard last 7 fixtures with Ex Stoke player Ryan Shotton being one of the 6 including Jonny Howson, George Friend, Adam Clayton, Rudy Gestede and Marvin Johnson needing to sign that extension.

Back to the game.

Saturday’s fixture will be the 98th meeting of the two sides with Middlesbrough coming out on top.

97 games played

Won 35
Lost 40
Drew 22


Last 10 meetings


Lost 5

Won 3
Drew 2


Stoke have lost the last two meetings, the Corresponding  fixture this season Stoke lost 2-1, Clucas scored stoke goals.

Form


Middlesbrough are lacking any kind of form, only winning 1 of their last 14 fixtures, in contrast to Stoke who have won 6 of their last 14


Last 3 results


Reading 1-1 Stoke
Stoke 5-1 Hull
Luton 1-1 Stoke


Middlesbrough 0-3 Swansea
Charlton 0-1 Middlesbrough 
Middlesbrough 2-2 Forest 


Who to watch out for


Lewis Wing has had a half decent season despite his clubs failings scoring 7 goals from midfield. Ashley Fletcher is the clubs top scorer this season with 8 goals


What does everyone expect from the game versus Middlesbrough.

What’s changed with Substitutes

What’s changed since we last played

Well the main change is with the number of substitutes allowed on the bench & entering the field of play.

Pre Covid-19 a team was allowed to make 3 substitutes from the 7 players picked for the bench. This has now been increased to 5 substitutes from 9 players on the bench.

The change was implemented due to the high volume of games in such a short space of time. It was suggested it could allow clubs to try and ease the pressure on the players by allowing more rotation.

The rule

Clubs can make 5 substitutes, though they are only allowed the same 3 breaks in play to make them, only other time a sub can be made outside these 3 windows is during the half time break.

The keeping of the 3 stoppages was to stop teams breaking momentum during the game by keep making subs.

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