Stoke vs Wolves preview
Tuesday 26th April 2011
This isn't quite a 'must-win' game, but it would be great to get the three points that would ensure our survival in the Premier League for a fourth season and do it at the expense of our local rivals who would then be staring the relegation trap-door in the face.
Saturday's point against Villa was very welcome as it stopped our pitiful away run dead in it's tracks and was another notch on the league ladder. There'll be a noisy, full house awaiting the Potters as they play their first home game since that FA Cup win against Bolton and another win at the Brit will ease the pressure nicely ahead of the build-up to the big game in just under three weeks time.
Wee all know what the mighty Tone will be saying to his players as he builds them back up for League action. He's already said that he's worried that the squad are tired, but hopefully the Britannia faithful can spur them on one more time.
'A lot of the players are not only physically tired but mentally tired,' he told BBC Radio Stoke.
We need the supporters to really be our 12th man against Wolves.
It will be a tough game because Wolves will come and they'll be desperate to do well.'
Stoke City Team News:
The bad news is that Ricardo Fuller will be missing after picking up an Achilles injury in the dying seconds at Villa Park. It's not yet known how long he'll be out for, but the early prognosis is not good. The better news is that John Carew is fit and available after not being allowed to play against his parent club on Saturday.
Player to watch: Matthew Etherington
Matty is one player that we need to keep fit for the rest of the season along with Jermaine Pennant. Both have been instrumental in revitalising our performances this season and helping us to shrug off our 'hoof-it' tag
Wolves Team News:
Wolves will have been gutted to lose out on two vital points on Saturday when they conceded a late equaliser against Fulham.
Stephen Hunt is available after recovering from a long-term groin injury. But Sylvan Ebanks-Blake is a major doubt after suffering a recurrence of a hamstring injury in Saturday's draw.
Player to watch: Karl Henry
The former Potter and Wolves skipper has now been the mainstay of the Wolves midfield for several seasons. But he'll find some sympathy at the Brit after reacting verbally to Fulham's Danny Murphy who laid into them in the press in much the same way that he had a go at us earlier in the season with more accusations of being 'too physical'. Get a life, Danny!
Match Facts & Stats
Saturday 30th April: Blackpool (away) kick-off: 3pm