Stoke City set to strengthen their Europa League qualification chances when they host a Swansea City, who has just got themselves out of the relegation threat.
The Potters are coming on the back of some strong results in the recent weeks and they have taste defeat only once in the last 6 matches. At the same time, they have some player fitness issues, but still have a strong group with enough potential to cover all departments.
Swansea have done well in their recent fixtures to distant themselves from the relegation zone. And three wins in their last four matches took them to 15th in the table and the Swans can finally get their out in the field with no pressure at all.
- Stoke City have won 4 of their last 6 matches, with just 1 defeat and a draw.
- The Potters have scored at least a goal in 5 of their last 6 matches.
- Stoke win 2 and lost 2 of their last 4 home matches and three of those games have seen over 2.5 goals.
- Swansea have won 3 and lost 1 out of their last 4 matches and scored at least a goal in each of them.
- Swansea’s last 4 away games read LWLD, with the win coming against Arsenal at the Emirates.
- Their last three home matches have recorded over 2.5 goals.
Stoke City: Team News
The young England international goalkeeper Jack Butland has been a key player for Stoke City this season and he is sidelined for the rest of the season after injuring in the Three Lion’s 3-2 win over Germany. In his absence, another youngster, the 23-year old Danish goalkeeper Jakob Haugaard is set to make his first league start for Stoke City.
Glen Johnson, Ryan Shawcross and Jonathan Walters are also out with injuries, while Marc Wilson, Xherdan Shaqiri and Charlie Adam are short of match fitness.
Stoke City: Expected Starting Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Haugaard – Pieters, Wollscheid, Cameron, Bardsley – Whelan, Imbula – Arnautovic, Afellay, Bojan – Diouf.
Swansea: Team News
Andre Ayew and Neil Taylor are the only injured players for Swansea in their trip to Stoke. Francesco Guidolin could field the same starting eleven which won 1-0 in their last game against Aston Villa.
Swansea: Expected Starting Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Fabianski – Fernandez, Williams, Naughton, Kingsley – Cork, Ki Sung-yueng– Sigurdsson, Leroy Fer, Barrow – Gomis.
Stoke City vs Swansea: Head-to-Head Stats
- The last six meetings between the two sides reads 2 wins each for Stoke and Swansea.
- While Stoke City are unbeaten in the last 4 matches at home against Swansea, with 3 wins and a draw.
- The first leg match on this season’s fixture between the two sides produced a 1-0 win for Stoke City.
Stoke City vs Swansea: Prediction
Stoke City will surely go into this game as favourites and could offer good value in backing them to win in this key fixture. At the same time, Swansea have improved a lot under Francesco Guidolin but they are still to produce results in away games.
My prediction for this match will be a win for Stoke City and I expect an entertaining match with goals above 2.5.
Best Bet: Stoke City to Win @ 2.11