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OFFICIAL club website of stoke city

Hughes Rues Individual Mistakes

Mark Hughes

MARK HUGHES rued several individual errors as pivotal to the outcome of Saturday’s Premier league showdown with champions Chelsea.

A superbly-taken hat-trick from Alvaro Moratta and a sublimely-executed strike from fellow Spaniard Pedro inflicted a first home defeat of the season upon the Welshman’s depleted side.

Speaking following the game, Hughes pin-pointed several costly first-half mistakes as major contributors to what he feels was a flattering Chelsea triumph. 

“It was a difficult day obviously, we were struggling with personnel beforehand and we ended the day with no senior central defenders available at all,” Hughes told Stoke City+.

“That said, I thought we stuck at it, even though we made the worst possible start by allowing them to score an easy goal so early on from a routine ball over the top.

“You can't allow yourselves to make too many individual errors in these sort of games, but Fletch (Darren Fletcher) allowed the ball to drop a little bit too far away from him and they scored a second which really set us back.

“At 2-0 we were feeling a little bit aggrieved I think it is fair to say, because for the most part I thought we handled them pretty well and looked a threat at the other end too.

“We continued to show our intent in the second half, asked questions of them and pushed them back, but in the end, once Bruno had to come off through injury, we really struggled to cope.

“The last 10 minutes of the game really went away from us to be perfectly honest, and they scored two quick-fire goals which really flatters them in terms of the margin of victory.”

He added: “All in all, given the circumstances of the personnel we had missing I thought we did OK.”