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OFFICIAL club website of stoke city

Preparations Disrupted By Virus

STOKE CITY'S preparations for Saturday's Barclays Premier League encounter with Liverpool at Anfield have been disrupted by a virus.

Asmir Begovic and Geoff Cameron were forced to miss training today after going down ill, while Phil Bardsley was sent home after he reported feeling under the weather.

Manager Mark Hughes hopes all three will recover in time to figure in his plans for the trip to Merseyside but admits it's hardly ideal preparation as City look to bounce back from last weekend's 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Burnley.

Hughes told "We're struggling at the moment with a little bit of a virus. It started with the Under-21s and we've had to close down their operation really and keep everyone away from the first team.

"Unfortunately, there's been a little bit of sickness in the senior squad this morning and two or three players have been sent back home.

"We hope we've caught it in time and didn't spread to the rest of the group. We're hopeful that it's not the same virus the Under-21s have had.

"Asmir Begovic and Geoff Cameron have gone down with sickness and we sent Phil Bardsley home just in case. He probably could have trained but there is no point taking risks as we haven't got that many bodies to play with."

Victor Moses will definitely miss the game at Anfield as he's nursing a thigh injury that is likely to sideline him for six weeks, while Oussama Assaidi is ineligible for the meeting with his parent club under the terms of his loan.

The Potters hope to have defensive duo Marc Wilson and Erik Pieters available. Both men have resumed training this week after missing the Burnley defeat through injury.

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