Stoke v Darlington preview
The Potters will field some fringe squad players in Tuesday's League Cup first round draw against League 2 side, Darlington and will be hoping that this season's League Cup campaign lasts longer than in recent years as they have traditionally struggled against lower league opposition.
Tony Pulis will not be playing Sam Bangoura who does not seem to be impressing his new manager during his belated pre-season training sessions. 'He has still got a long way to go. He's had his holiday, plus pre-season and by the look of things had a good holiday on the beach.'
Stoke City Team News:
Jeff Whitely, on loan from Cardiff until Christmas, looks set to make his first start whilst Hannes Sigurdsson and Anthony Pulis should also figure.
Danny Higginbotham will not be risked as he attempts to shrug off a knee ligament injury.
Player to watch: Peter Sweeney
Seems to be on a roll at the moment and well deserved his first goal of the season for the Potters on Saturday
Darlington Team News:
Darlington also look set to rest key players as manager David Hodgson seems to have one eye on their next League game away to Walsall on Saturday, but new signing Julian Joachim looks likely to make his first appearance for the Quakers.
Former Stoke player, David Rowson has just joined them on a one year contract, but it's not clear if he will figure in the game.
Player to watch: Gaetano Giallanza
Although the Swiss striker has not played in England since his days on loan with Norwich in 2001, he has hit the ground running since joining Darlington in the summer, scoring two goals in the opening four games.
Match Facts & Stats
Not much form to go on between the two clubs, but the Potters should really have no difficulty in pushing past Darlington into the next round - if they play to their capabilities and give the Quakers some respect.
Saturday 26th August: Plymouth (home) kick-off 3pm
Saturday 9th September: Barnsley (away) kick-off 3pm