Vital Football

Latest Stoke City News

Stoke City 1-0 Hajduk Split

Stoke City 1-0 Hajduk Split

A Jon Walters 3rd minute header was enough to see off Hajduk Split at the Britannia Stadium and leave Stoke with a slender advantage heading into next thursday's return leg.

The Potters were fast out of the blocks, a Rory Delap pass was picked up by Etherington on the left, he evaded his man before swinging a lovely cross towards the back post which was met by Jon Walters, the former Ipswich man guiding the ball beyond the keeper to give Stoke an early lead.

The visitors were clearly rattled, only moments later Kenwyne Jones found the net but his effort was ruled out for what seemed to be either offside or the ball running out of play.

Chances for the Potters continued to flow before the interval, Shawcross was denied twice, firstly from a Delap throw in as he flicked the ball past the keeper, only to see a defender clear the ball of the line. A free kick also provided Shawcross with the chance to double Stoke's lead but the skipper failed to find a way past Hajduk keeper Danijel Subasic.

Etherington had been nursing a knock prior to kick off and he was clearly feeling the effects, however the winger oozes quality and his cross which set up the only goal of the match was a piece of class which Stoke's visitors lacked tonight.

Hajduk were neat, tidy and organised, the Croatians threatened at times but Stoke were rarely troubled and the defensive duo of Shawcross and Huth looked at ease - despite the best efforts of Hajduk number 99 Anas Sharbini.

An uneventful second half saw both teams fail to make many inroads and the last 15 minutes will be remembered more for the Hajduk Split fans' antics as several flares were let off, rather than what was occurring on the pitch.

However, Huth could've extended the lead in the final minutes, the colossal defender turned inside the area before firing a shot well wide of the goal.

Tony Pulis, on the official site, said :

"We deserved to win the game by two or three goals and we're disappointed we haven't done so in the end, but as experienced European campaigners will tell you, keeping a clean sheet in the home leg is so important.

"If we score a goal over there now, they will need at least three to prevent us from going through so that makes it very interesting."

He added: "It will be very tough out there because they are a good side and apparently their crowd is nearly as noisy as ours. But we have nothing to lose because this is a new experience for us and so we will relish the challenge."



So, we've truly arrived in Europe, tonight the Britannia faithful were even treated to a Croatian announcer on the tannoy!

A win is a win, but I get the feeling both teams will be satisfied with the result tonight, ideally Stoke would've grabbed another to give ourselves a better chance in the return leg but we kept a clean sheet, all we have to do is do the same next week and we're through. Although, whilst we will believe we have enough to see it out, 35,000 Split fans will be having other ideas.



Man of the match : Rory Delap.

The 35-year-old epitomised the solid, unspectacular, but satisfying Stoke display, not only breaking up the play but laying a beautiful pass to Etherington who set up the only goal of the night. In all honesty, there wasn't really one player who stood out tonight, but Rory proved he still has a part to play.

















Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Tom Mckeon
Date:Friday July 29 2011
Time: 12:03AM

Best of Vital Network

Comments

0
A good first game with a great result! Shame the second half couldn't see any second or even third goals for us, but we'll take it non the less. We'll go over there next thursday with it all in the balance, but all we need is a 0-0 draw. Can we do it? I think so.
Rhin0
31/07/2011 17:44:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Stoke City Articles

Six Clubs Set 2015/16 Premiership Records

Who were the six clubs to register a record breaking or equalling 2015/16 campaign?

2016/17 Premier League Fixtures Released Tomorrow

The Premier League fixtures for the 2016/17 season will be announced early tomorrow morning (Wednesday).

Stoke Fans To Travel 4,874 Miles In 2016/17

With the make up of Premier League known for the coming 2016/17 season with the curtain drawn on the 2015/16 year and all Play Off winners announced, here is how far Stoke City fans...

Average League Position In Last 50 Yrs

Have you ever wondered what the average league positions would be for sides historically?

Archived Vital Stoke Articles

Vital Stoke articles from

Site Journalists

Tom Barker
no email
Profile
Matthew Forrester
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

MOTM v West Ham
Suggested By:
Given9%
Cameron0%
Shawcross30%
Wollscheid0%
Pieters1%
Whelan2%
Imbula46%
Walters0%
Bojan5%
Arnautovic0%
Joselu0%
Diouf1%
Bardsley1%
Adam5%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Leicester City 38 23 12 3 81 32
2 Arsenal 38 20 11 7 71 29
3 Spurs 38 19 13 6 70 34
4 Man City 38 19 9 10 66 30
5 Man Utd 38 19 9 10 66 14
6 Southampton 38 18 9 11 63 18
7 West Ham 38 16 14 8 62 14
8 Liverpool 38 16 12 10 60 13
9 Stoke 38 14 9 15 51 -14
10 Chelsea 38 12 14 12 50 6
11 Everton 38 11 14 13 47 4
12 Swansea 38 12 11 15 47 -10
13 Watford 38 12 9 17 45 -10
14 WBA 38 10 13 15 43 -14
15 Crystal Palace 38 11 9 18 42 -12
16 AFC Bournemouth 38 11 9 18 42 -22
17 Sunderland 38 9 12 17 39 -14
R Newcastle 38 9 10 19 37 -21
R Norwich 38 9 7 22 34 -28
R Aston Villa 38 3 8 27 17 -49
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Stoke City Results (view all)

Stoke City Fixtures (view all)