Hughes Wary Of Liverpool
Stoke City manager Mark Hughes has admitted that we have to be wary of Liverpool's threats ahead of Wednesday night's tie, but our focus won't just be on Mohamed Salah.
On the back of defeat to Crystal Palace at the weekend, Hughes is looking for a reaction from the side but he knows it'll be tough against Jurgen Klopp's side.
Speaking to the Official Website as he met with the media this week to discuss the next game, Hughes knew we couldn't keep wasting our advantages like we have done recently - especially with Liverpool unbeaten in their last five matches.
'I think people say that Liverpool are good going forward but are poor at the back. With the way that they play, high tempo and high pressing, then sometimes defenders are going to be exposed, and that is when teams can catch them. Some people will interpret that as poor defending, but a lot of the time that isn`t the case. They maybe haven`t dealt with set-pieces as they would have liked to have done. On the night it is about us performing and making sure we can affect them.'
Hughes went on to say.
'We will certainly contemplate changes because we are facing tough weeks leading into Christmas now, so most clubs will try and use their resources, just as we will. We are playing against a high-quality team, who will test us, but I fully expect us to give a real good account of ourselves.'
Looking past Liverpool, Hughes also spoke about his belief how it remained only a matter of time before Stoke established themselves as a top ten outfit given the positives he could take from recent matches and he felt the players had been boosted by that, despite disappointments along the way.
'I really don`t think we are too away from establishing ourselves in the top half of the league. Once we get there then we will stay there. The only way we can quieten people down who are a little bit negative and anxious, which is what the Premier league does to people, is to pick up positive results. You have to be careful that whenever you lose a lead, or a potential opportunity to win the game, then emotion can cloud your actual perception of the game itself.'
'On the day against Crystal Palace I thought it was an OK performance, but clearly goals shape people`s perception of the game, and consequently we need to cut those poor goals out. We don`t have any major issues, not in my view anyway, for the most part we are performing well enough to get positive results. Unfortunately we fell at the final hurdle. We aren`t devastated though - we will turn it around. It seems to have been quite negative since the start of the season, and the only way we can do that is by winning.'