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OFFICIAL club website of stoke city

Belief Was Key - Diouf

MAME DIOUF says the belief in the squad that they could claim the scalp of the Premier League champions was key to Saturday's historic victory against Manchester City.

The Potters had never previously scored at the Etihad Stadium in the Barclays Premier League, let alone record a single point from any of the previous six meetings there.

However, a stunning solo effort from the Senegalese international, his first for the Club following his summer arrival, was enough to secure maximum points against the reigning league champions and ensure a triumphant return back to his former stomping ground for boss Mark Hughes.

"It was a brilliant win for us, the players, the management and the fans, who were absolutely brilliant again," beamed the 26-year old striker following the game.

"I'm really happy for the team and everyone, because we have been so focused on this game and our only thoughts were about winning it.

"We worked so hard during the week and it made for a great performance. We stuck to the manager's plan by making sure when we won the ball to try and do something with it.

"When we have the team spirit like we do and stick to the plan it is brilliant to see. It was a good day for us all. It was very special."

Diouf's sensational strike highlighted just why Hughes courted his signature for the best part of twelve months, having initially tried to capture the forward during last season's summer transfer window.

"When I got the ball I just turned around and everything was open for me so I carried on running and ending up scoring," he explained.

"It was great to be able to score the goal today in front of our supporters. They were one hundred percent behind us and we will continue to work hard and make them happy.

"I am really happy here, and I feel a part of the group. For me It helps hugely knowing the manager has belief in me. We want to build upon this result and move forward."

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