MARK HUGHES admits that he has a selection dilemma going into tomorrow’s Premier League encounter against unbeaten West Ham United.
The Welshman has confirmed that there are several places in his starting eleven that haven’t yet been decided upon, having been impressed with a number of performers during Wednesday night’s 3-1 Capital One Cup success against Walsall.
Trinidad and Tobago ace Kenwyne Jones marked his first start of the campaign with a clinically taken hat-trick, meaning he comes into serious consideration to replace regular starter Peter Crouch.
“Kenwyne made a real claim for a starting role at West Ham with his performance this week,” the City boss said at the pre-match press conference.
“In terms of what I wanted from Kenwyne and what he gave on the pitch, I don’t think he could have done anymore than what he did.
“He scored three very good goals and I thought his general touch, and quality on the ball was very good.”
Meanwhile Wilson Palacios, who made his first Potters start in almost twelve months this week, will be hoping to get the nod to feature in midfield on Saturday having undergone a minor surgical procedure two weeks ago.
The Honduran was primed to start at Anfield on the opening day of the season, however, he suffered chronic stomach pains during the pre-match warm up, meaning his place went to Marc Wilson.
The Republic of Ireland international has adjusted seamlessly to his new midfield role having played at full back for the past two seasons, and he will be hoping to have done enough to retain his starting spot at the Boleyn Ground.
Elsewhere, Asmir Begovic is expected to return to the side having made way for Thomas Sorensen in the cup, whilst Oussama Assaidi could make his first start since signing from Liverpool having made an impression from the bench in his maiden Potters outing.
Remember, stokecityfc.com is the first place to announce the confirmed Stoke City starting eleven on matchdays, so if you aren’t at the game then be sure to log on around 50 minutes prior to kick-off for all of the team news.