Three Signings Who Could Make Stoke City Challenge For Europa League Spot Next Season
Stoke City had a nervy campaign following a 13th placed finish in the league and suffered a setback in their challenge to secure a European spot. Since the appointment of Mark Hughes back in 2013, the Potters managed a few top-notch signings, altered their style of play and became a regular top ten outfit who were pushing for a place in Europe until last season when they failed significantly to achieve their goals. Having secured the Bosman transfer of former Manchester United and West Brom midfielder Darren Fletcher, Potters boss Mark Hughes is keen to add a few new resources in order to achieve his European dreams.
We can name three such players who are realistic transfer targets and capable of guiding them to get closer to Premier League heavyweights.
The Dutch international was a part of Eredivisie winning Feyenoord team and is a strong contender to replace Erik Pieters in left-back who was inconsistent in the closing stages of the season. Stoke are looking to strengthen their back-line and Nelom would be a smart buy considering his passing and crossing traits that suits Mark Hughes’ style of play.
The Englishman struggled to make it to Manchester City’s starting lineup since his move from Aston Villa a couple of years back. Delph is surplus to requirements in a star-studded City squad and Pep Guardiola might listen to offers for the 27-year old midfielder. Frenchman Giannelli Imbula could depart and Stoke will be looking to add an experienced midfield general who can control the game from the middle of the park alongside Joe Allen. Stoke need to make an ambitious bid to acquire Fabian Delph who can be a huge influence in order to chase a European place.
Stoke City need a marksman up front who can score goals on a regular basis. They were forced to rely on the 36-year-old Peter Crouch for majority of the campaign following an unimpressive display from Manchester City loanee Wilfried Bony and January signing Saido Berahino. So a move for Frenchman Anthony Modeste makes sense as the 29-year-old FC Köln forward netted 25 times in 32 appearances that made him third highest scorer of 2016-17 Bundesliga campaign after Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Robert Lewandowski. Modeste, 6 ft 2 in, can be an instant solution in front of goal who will be assisted by Xherdan Shaqiri and Marko Arnautovic from the wings.