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OFFICIAL club website of stoke city

Three Changes For Villa

TONY PULIS made three changes to his starting line-up for Saturday's Barclays Premier League clash with Aston Villa at the Britannia Stadium.

Matthew Etherington gave the City boss a major boost by declaring himself fit enough to start, after overcoming a back problem that kept him out of the side against Everton last weekend.

The winger came into the team at the expense of Cameron Jerome, who dropped down to the bench, whilst Pulis also made two other changes with Kenwyne Jones and Dean Whitehead replacing Peter Crouch and Glenn Whelan.

Crouch, who has suffered from a virus in the build-up to the game, was named amongst the substitutes, whilst Whelan was absent altogether through injury.

The rest of the side was as you were at Goodison Park seven days ago, with Asmir Begovic ushering a back-four that comprised of Geoff Cameron, Ryan Shawcross, Robert Huth and Marc Wilson.

Ryan Shotton occupied the spot on the right hand side of midfield alongside Steven Nzonzi and the returning Whitehead and Etherington.

Trinidadian striker Jones, who made his first start in over two months, partnered Republic of Ireland international Walters up-front.

The substitutes bench included Thomas Sorensen, Charlie Adam and Michael Owen, however, there was no place for American star Brek Shea, who Pulis admitted was still short of fitness in his pre-match pressĀ 

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