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Stoke City have not been enjoying the best of Premier League campaigns so far. Sitting at 17th spot in the points table, Stoke face the danger of falling into relegation zone. Picking up three points will be extremely important for them, and that’s what they will be fighting for – especially after having lost to Bournemouth in the previous game.
Although Stoke have had a leaky defence so far – they’ve shipped 9 goals in their last two – the club have also been scoring quite a bit of goals. In fact, they are the highest goal-scorers among the bottom six clubs, so that should provide them a nice boost of confidence ahead of a tough trip to Watford.
Thomas Edwards played in the demolition against Manchester City and he could feature. However, he still remains doubtful since he had to miss out on the Bournemouth clash. Bruno Martins Indi is out with a knock again, while Stephen Ireland remains the only long-term absentee with a broken leg. Besides that, Stoke have no fresh injury concerns and are likely to deploy a full-strength squad on Saturday.
Butland is likely to continue manning the goal and will face an uphill task since he will have to keep out the efforts of a seemingly strong Watford attack.
At right-vack should be Glen Johnson. He will have to work on maintaining the compactness among the defenders to keep Watford at bay.
The Chelsea loanee has proven to be one of Stoke’s better defenders and is expected to continue working his magic at the heart of their defence.
Wimmer has proven to be quite successful at Stoke, and his experience will prove to be crucial in this big game, making it extremely likely for Hughes to hand him a start.
The defensive line could possibly be completed by Pieters at left-back as the player will focus on being less wasteful after the loss against Bournemouth.
The player has proven to be influential but he needs to work on his finishing. If deployed against Watford, Choupo-Moting can hope to maximise his output by tweaking his skills further.
There’s been a lot of news floating about of Fletcher’s possible retirement but he is likely to continue his usual role for Stoke against Watford.
Although Joe Allen is believed to have recovered, he is yet to attain full match fitness. Cameron has proven to be quite decent in this position despite it not being his preferred position, thus making it likely for him to be chosen.
The player has quickly embraced change but it will be quite a challenge for him if he gets deployed in the midfield against his Watford counterparts.
The player has been instrumental in Stoke’s goal-scoring of late, making him quite vital in their attempt to beat Watford. Thus, Hughes is likely to hand him a start.
Given the amount of injuries, it could be an enticing option for Hughes to deploy Jese behind Peter Crouch. The player’s experience will be vital and he will have Jese’s support to rely upon.